Ryan Potulny’s power play goal at 2:57 of overtime gave the Hershey Bears a stunning 4-3 victory over the Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Penguins on Wednesday night at the Giant Center.
With the win the Bears claw their way back into this series. It is their first win of the series. The WBS Penguins still have a 2-1 advantage over the Bears in this best of five series.
After the Penguins came back from a two-goal deficit, Hershey’s Kyle Greentree gave the Bears the lead once again with seven minutes left in regulation. A failed clearing attempt by the Penguins left Greentree alone in the slot, where he one-timed Jacob Micflikier’s pass off the near post and into the net and past Brad Thiessen.
With 2:17 remaining in the third, a late man-advantage helped Wilkes-Barre/Scranton to rally once again and force overtime as Alex Grant’s rifle shot from the point slipped through the pads of Hershey goaltender Dany Sabourin. We we’re tied at 3-3.
It would be a power play in the opening minutes of overtime that allowed the Bears to skate away with the victory. Penguins goalie Brad Thiessen got a blocker on a shot from the point by Tomas Kundratek, but could not seal the left post before Potulny fired back the rebound at 2:57. That was the game winner.
Wilkes-Barre/Scranton got on the board just 38 seconds in with the help of some carry-over power play time. After Jason Williams found Walker with a cross-zone pass, the Penguins right-winger swept a backhand shot that Sabourin denied with his skate, but Cal O’Reilly cut in front to deposit the loose puck.
The Penguins knotted the score at 6:22 of the third with Paul Thompson taking advantage of a turnover deep in the Hershey zone and centering in front to a wide-open Eric Tangradi for his first goal of the post season.
Thiessen took his first loss of the playoffs with 15 saves on 18 shots. Sabourin stopped 26 in the win for Hershey.
Game 4 is Friday night in Hershey.