A few things to know before the Devils and Bears take to the Giant Center Ice:
Season: This is the 5th of 6 meetings between the two teams, with Hershey holding a 4-0 lead so far. Last matchup was February 4th in Atlantic City, a 5-3 Bears victory. They meet once more this season, on March 26th in Chocolatetown.
Standings: The Bears begin the day in second place in the East Division, with a record of 36-19-1-3 for 76 points. They stand 8 points behind first place Wilkes-Barre/Scranton and 2 points ahead of 3rd place Charlotte. The Devils stand in 6th place with a record of 22-30-1-3 and 48 points, 20 points behind 5th place Norfolk and 2 points ahead of 7th place Syracuse.
Scoring: Hershey is lead by former Rats center Keith Aucoin with 56 points (15 G, 41 A) and winger Brian Willsie with 51 points (23 G, 28 A). Braden Holtby has assumed the starting goaltender’s role with Dany Sabourin out with a knee injury, but he too has had some injury issues recently. Todd Ford and Jared DeMichiel, both summoned from the Bears’ ECHL affiliate in South Carolina, are the current tandem in net, Ford getting the bulk of the work. For the visitors, Matt Anderson still paces the Devils in scoring, leading all skaters with 39 points (17 G, 22 A) followed by Adam Henrique with 34 points (17 G, 17 A). Jeff Frazee is on the Devils’ 3 game road trip this weekend, but it is not clear if he will see any action. Dave Caruso got the start in Springfield but was lifted for Mike McKenna after 2 periods after giving up 5 goals to the Falcons.
Game time: 7:00 PM. I will not be tweeting this one (will be at another game) but will pass along updates as needed…