Coming into Saturday night’s game with the Grand Rapids Griffins, the Hershey Bears had struggled mightily this season. Having lost four straight to start the campaign, the Bears needed a big performance to get back on track. They got just that from Chandler Stephenson.
Stephenson, who played in four games for the Capitals last season and was one of the final players cut from the big-league roster this year, recorded a hat trick to go along with an assist. The forward’s strong night led the Bears to a 4-2 victory, their first of the young season.
The Bears were down 1-0 late in the first period when Stephenson carried the puck into the zone shorthanded, cut past a defender to the left circle, and let a perfectly-placed shot fly.
After the Bears took the lead early in the third, Stephenson padded the lead. He took a pass at center and drove between three defenders, then threw a pass across the crease. The puck deflected off a Griffins defender and into the net to put the Bears up 3-1.
The Griffins cut the lead to 3-2, but Stephenson again added insurance for Hershey. Stephenson chipped the puck past the defender in neutral, springing himself on a breakaway. He put the puck past the goalie to ensure a 4-2 Bears’ victory.
Stephenson signed a new two-year deal with the Caps in the offseason.
After their big win Saturday, the Bears got blown out by the Rockford IceHogs 5-0 today.
— Hershey Bears (@TheHersheyBears) October 22, 2017
Headline image: @ChocolateHockey
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