Cleveland Monsters (5) at Hershey Bears (2)
Friday night the Cleveland Monsters took the “L” but bounced back Saturday night with four unanswered goals to beat the Hershey Bears 5-2.
The Monsters kicked off the scoring 8:32 into the game. Nathan Gerbe broke away from the from the pack and fired the puck into the net. He then proceeded to slide into the net like it was home plate.
Riley Barber tied the game at one for the Bears a little over ten minutes into the first period. After a nice setup by Mike Sgarbossa and Lucas Johansen, Barber slammed it home from the top of the right faceoff circle.
Around six minutes later, the Bears took the 2-1 lead when Sgarbossa was able to sneak into the crease and push the puck past the goal line.
Coming into the second period, the Monsters had enough. They were ready to score and come home with the win.
A minute and a half into the second period, Kevin Stenlund scored the equalizer. Parker Milner blocked Gerbe’s initial shot. Stenlund popped the puck into the net from point blank range for the goal.
A minute later, a defensive zone turnover by the Bears led to the Monsters third goal of the game. Milano forced the turnover and fired the puck into the slot for Adam Clendening to bang into the net.
Halfway through the second period, Cross launched the puck at the net. Milner lost sight of the puck as it rolls up his body, over his shoulder, and into the net giving the Monsters the 4-2 lead.
A display of patience by Stenlund gave the Monsters the 5-2 lead with 3:15 left in the game. Stenlund kept the puck along the board for 30 seconds. When the puck finally got loose, it popped off of Vitaly Abramov’s stick and headed towards Cross. When the puck got to Cross, he fired it into the net.
The Monsters were able to hold the Bears off for the rest of the third and skate away with the 5-2 win.
But Wait! There’s More
· Sonny Milano and Ryan MacInnis should play together more often. They read each other quite well and pick up each other’s rebounds. Plus, I’ve noticed a change in Milano’s aggression level since they started playing together.
· The players seemed more relaxed with Brett Gallant on the ice last night. It’s incredible to see a difference in the team when a noted enforcer is on the ice.
· Jean-Francois Berube was phenomenal last night. He kept his five-hole tight and was able to see through screens.
· Kayle Doetzel played in his first game wearing a Monsters sweater. The Bears spent the bulk of the night trying to unsuccessfully get under his skin. Honestly, I think Doetzel will bring a lot to the table for the Monsters. He’s a mini Gallant. Hopefully, they don’t make him an enforcer only role since he’s an incredibly talented play maker as well.
1st – Adam Clendening (1g, 1a)
2nd – Nathan Gerbe (1g, 1a)
3rd – Mike Sgarbossa (1g, 1a)
Honorable Mention – Parker Milner for his incredible acting scene in the second period. This came after Sonny Milano accidentally hit him in the face with a stick.
The Monsters head back to Quicken Loans Arena on Friday, November 23rd at 7pm est.