MANCHESTER, NH – Center Kyle Wilson scored the go-ahead goal to lead the Hershey Bears over the Manchester Monarchs 4-3 on "Mullet Night: Redneck Edition" on Friday evening at the Verizon Wireless Arena in front of 8,355 fans.
Manchester (27-27-4-4) is in fifth place in the Atlantic Division with 62 points. Hershey (33-23-1-5) is in fourth place in the Atlantic Division with 72 points.
Wilson scored the third and final unanswered goal at 16:09 in the last frame. Receiving a pass from defenseman Sami Lepisto at the top of the left face-off circle, Wilson sent a wrist shot on net. The biscuit bounced off the inner thigh of goaltender Jonathan Quick and into the basket for the 4-3 win on "Mullet Night: Redneck Edition."
The Monarchs lit the lamp first at 4:31 of the opening frame with center Marc-Andre Cliche's fifth goal of the season. Center Brady Murray passed the puck to defenseman Jeff Likens at the right point. Likens took a wrist shot on net that Cliche was able to redirect past Hershey's netminder Daren Machesney for the early 1-0 lead.
Former Monarchs right wing Scott Barney started the drive that tied the score at 1-1. Barney took a shot on Quick that went just wide of the right post. With Quick out of position, right wing Alexander Giroux passed the puck to center Jason Morgan who was open at the top of the crease and buried the puck at the 17:14 mark of the first period.
Murray chased down the rubber saucer in the neutral zone and turned up ice along the left wing boards. Just over the blueline, he passed the puck to Cliche who was entering the right face-off circle. Cliche unsaddled a slap shot that beat Machesney over his glove side with only 54 seconds left in the first period to send the Monarchs into the locker room with the 2-1 advantage.
The Monarchs scored the lone goal early in the second period with 2:53 gone on the clock and right wing Teddy Purcell on the ice as the Monarchs extra man on the delayed penalty. Center Gabe Gauthier went tape-to-tape with Purcell at the left point. Purcell fired a rocket on net that hit the right goal post. On the doorstep of Machnesney, right wing Kevin Westgarth batted the puck across the red line putting the Monarchs up 3-1.
The Bears pulled to within one goal on the power play. Morgan sent a cross-ice pass to defenseman Patrick McNeill just outside the left face-off circle. McNeill uncorked a shot that was tipped by defenseman Danny Syvret while en route to the back of the net at 10:33 of the final frame.
Wasting no time, center Jay Beagle evened the score at three apiece at 13:07 of the third period. Center Malcolm MacMillian found defenseman Tyler Sloan at the left point. Sloan drew back and unleashed a slap shot toward the net. Beagle put his stick in the way and redirected the puck five-hole past Quick for his 14th goal on the year.
Quick took the loss with 30 saves on 34 shots on net. Machesney was awarded the win stopping 28-of-31 shots.
Manchester went 0-for-6 with the man advantage. Hershey was 1-for-4 on the power play.
The Monarchs brought back the hockey hair with a twist as they introduced "Mullet Night: Redneck Edition" on Friday. The likes of Garth Brooks, Willie Nelson and Dolly Parton helped cheer on NH's Biggest Redneck Contest with Manchester native Tim Trickett winning the grand prize. The first 3,500 fans in attendance also received mullet trucker hats and Redneck teeth, courtesy of Sanel Auto Parts.