Tonight's game isn't quite as big as game 1 for Hershey but it is huge for the Monarchs. If the Bears can win tonight they would be up 2-0 in the series as they head for Manchester and would at least guarantee that they wouldn't lose the series without coming home first.
But if the Monarchs can somehow beat the Bears at Giant Center, which is extremely rare (more on that in a second) then they could conceivably win the series without returning to Hershey.
I know, I know...Hershey looked really good on Wednesday night. All the fears and concerns I expressed on here leading into game 1 were found to be unwarranted. Surely all you Bears fans are now confident that Hershey can win this series in 4 games and be well rested for the Calder Cup Finals.
I will admit that I am definitely more confident in Hershey's chances but remember this...(if you read my game review write up you saw this already) Jonathon Bernier and the Monarchs gave up 4 goals in a game 1 loss to Worcester in the last round. Do you know how many goals he gave up in the next 5 games?
6 goals in 5 games and the Sharks were heading to the golf course. Don't be fooled by Bernier's 'perceived' troubles on Wednesday night. He is very very good and he can win games for the Monarchs.
Now, that being said I really think Hershey is positioned well to win this series. Maybe in as few games as 5. But in order to do that they would have to win tonight. They win tonight and I think this series could be over before next weekend. They lose tonight and I would say the series will return to Hershey next Saturday night.
But can the Monarchs win in Hershey? Can anyone beat the Bears in Hershey???
In the playoffs Hershey is 6-0 and has outscored the opponent 25-14 at Giant Center. Impressive. Now check this out...
Through the first 10 home games (up until Nov 28) Hershey went 5-5 at home. Since then they have gone an astounding 29-1 and have not scored less than 3 goals at home in any game.
- scored more than 3 goals 27 times
- are 27-0 when they score 4 or more
- scored more than 4 goals 20 times during the regular season stretch
- 35-1 since Nov 28
- scored 3 goals (no fewer) in every game
- scored 4 goals or more in 32 games
- have a 32-0 record when they score 4+ goals
LET'S GO BEARS!!!!