Entering last nights game the Bears were 2-0-0-1 against the Syracuse Crunch this season. They had outscored them a collective 13-4 in those 3 games.
Make that 3-0-0-1 and the score is now 18-6.
Kyle Greentree scored a goal in his first game back in the lineup and the Bears earned their 8th victory of December and officially took over the #1 spot in the East Division.
Now the Bears get a short holiday break as they won't practice until Monday and don't play again until Tuesday night in Wilkes-Barre.
For the first time since the middle of October the forward lineup looked like the one we all expected to see coming out of camp. Cody Eakin returned to the lineup on Sunday and Greentree returned from a broken wrist last night.
Due to that pesky veterans rule, Graham Mink was the healthy scratch last night. With that move the Bears ran with 3 lines that are probably best referred to as 1A, 1B, and 1C.
The lines last night were:
Greentree - Aucoin - Bourque
Micflikier - Potulny - Ford
Kane - Eakin - Hanson
Mitchell - Carroll - Rechlicz
(Thanks to the folks over at Sweetest Hockey on Earth for providing the lines)
Looks like a deep talented lineup.
Combined the top line has 26 goals and 69 assists on the season. And Greentree has played in 5 games.
Combined the 2nd line has 24 goals and 51 assists this season. And Potulny has only played in 16 games.
Combined the 3rd line has 17 goals and 19 assists this season. And Eakin has only played in 12 games.
That's 67 goals and 139 assists amongst Hershey's top 9 forwards.
Oh and that doesn't include Mink's 11 goals and 14 assists.
67 goals. By 9 guys. (If you add Mink you have 78 goals by 10 guys.)
The Hamilton Bulldogs have 60 in 28 games. The San Antonio Rampage have 66. Albany and Lake Erie have 70. Chicago and last seasons Calder Cup Champion Binghamton Senators have 72.
Yes, those numbers are for entire teams.
Overall the Bears have scored 111 goals. Good for 2nd place in the AHL behind only the Norfolk Admirals.
The offense is solid. One of the best in the league...no question about it.
The defense...not so solid. The Bears have allowed more goals (88) than 21 other teams in the AHL. 21. That means that there are only 8 teams that have given up more goals than Hershey so far this season. All but one of them has more regulation losses than wins.
The lone team with more goals allowed than Hershey AND a winning record...
The Eastern Conference leading St. John's Icecaps. They have allowed 89 and have scored 106.