HERSHEY, Pa. – Carter Camper completed his hat trick with 1:04 remaining in regulation, capping off a wild Eastern Conference quarterfinal Game Four with a 5-4 victory over the HERSHEY BEARS on Sunday evening at GIANT Center.
For the first time in the series, the Bruins grabbed the game’s first goal. Camper started off his night by deflecting a shot from Matt Bartkowski inside the right post and past Philipp Grubauer at 8:01.
On the Bruins’ second power play of the game, Jordan Caron would take a shot from the right side that hit Graham Mink at the net front. Mink grabbed the puck, turned and stuffed a shot underneath Grubauer at 12:10, giving the visitors a 2-0 lead. The Bears missed on two power play chances late in the period.
But the Bears would play a superb second period, outshooting the Bruins 13-4 and drawing four consecutive power plays. Hershey would get on the board 1:58 seconds into the frame, with Bobby Robins serving an elbowing minor. Joey Crabb finished a give-and-go play with Ryan Potulny by skating in from the left circle and firing a shot high over Niklas Svedberg.
With no further scoring in the period, the Bears would need to battle back in the third. Crabb struck again at 3:42 of the final frame, heading to the net front to deflect a shot from Julien Brouillette past Svedberg and tying the game.
Controversy ensued when Peter LeBlanc scored the apparent go-ahead goal shortly afterward, but it was waved off due to contact on Svedberg by Tomas Kundratek. That would turn the Bruins way, as Camper scored his second of the game by slamming a loose puck at the right of Grubauer’s crease into the net at 8:10.
The Bears would again tie the game when Casey Wellman picked the upper left corner with a slap shot off a LeBlanc faceoff win at the 11:45 mark.
Rookie forward Tom Wilson, the Capitals’ 16th overall pick in 2012, then scored his first career AHL goal upon exiting the penalty box. Brouillette would work a shot on goal and Svedberg kicked it aside. Wilson pounced on it and buried the rebound, giving the Bears a 4-3 lead with 4:40 left to play.
Not one minute later, Nicolas Deschamps would be penalized for clearing the puck out of play. On the ensuing power play, Torey Krug fed a pass to the left circle, where Craig Cunningham one-timed it high over Grubauer at 17:26 to tie the game 4-4.
Chris Bourque would then lead a charge into the Bears’ zone as the final minute approached. He dropped the puck for Camper, who turned and took a snap shot through a screen that sailed past Grubauer at 18:56.
The Bears would get Grubauer to the bench for a sixth attacker, but Providence held on for the win.
Grubauer drops to 2-2 with 32 saves on 37 Bruins shots. Svedberg improves to 2-2, making 28 saves on 32 shots against. The Bears were 1-for-6 on the power play and 2-for-4 on the penalty kill.
With the win, the Bruins have evened the series at two wins each and forced a deciding Game Five. The game will be played Wednesday, May 8 with puck drop from Dunkin’ Donuts Center at 7:05 PM. Fans may tune into the pre-game show beginning at 6:25 PM on the Bears Radio Network of affiliates WQIC-FM 100.1, WKBO-AM 1230, WRBT-94.9 FM HD-2, and via the iHeart Radio application on station WHP-AM 580. Fans may also watch online for a small fee via AHL Live, by visiting www.ahllive.com.