After dropping the first two games of their Calder Cup Finals series at Giant Center against the Texas Stars, the Hershey Bears now must hit the road to continue the series, and if the Bears don’t reverse a few detrimental trends, they could very well meet their Waterloo in the capital city of Austin, Texas, which incidentally was originally named “Waterloo”.
Among the Bears’ disturbing data, the third period facts are the most telling.
•In the previous three series, the Bears had pulled out a victory in five contests in which they did not lead entering the third period. Both of Texas’ game-winning goals have been in the third period.
•Only four times in seventeen games have the Bears carried a lead into the third period.
•The Bears are in a 0-for-21 skid on the power play. They haven’t scored a power play goal since the third game of the Manchester series.
•Stumbling Starts: only three times in seventeen games have they carried a lead into the first intermission.
•Alexandre Giroux is pointless and only four shots on goal in the series.
•Keith Aucoin has notched just one assist and three shots on goal.
•Chris Bourque, who had eight points in the Manchester series, has failed to find the scoreboard, but not for lack of opportunity, registering eight shots on goal against Texas.
•John Carlson, expected to be the offensive catalyst on the Bears’ blue line has only two points (both assists) in nine games, and has not scored a goal in a Hershey uniform in 17 games, dating back to the regular season.
On the brighter side, there are signs of hope.
•Francois Bouchard, who was mired in a Texas-sized one goal in fourteen games goal scoring drought entering this series, has found the back of the net in each game.
•After missing four games due to injury, Andrew Gordon has managed eight shots on goal, including a third-period tally in game two.
•Bourque, Giroux and Gordon have each scored five goals away from the cozy confines of Giant Center, while Aucoin has chipped in with nine helpers.
•Bears’ PK has been stellar, allowing only one fluky goal in ten chances in the Texas series.