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Bears Spoil Amerks Home Opener

by Staff Writer / Florida Panthers
(Rochester, NY)... Andrew Gordon ruined Rochester's home opener by breaking a 3-3 tie with only minutes remaining in the game to lift the Hershey Bears to their first win of the season. With the win, the Bears improve to (1-0-0-1), while the Amerks fall to (1-1-0-0).

Hershey’s Keith Aucoin (2+1), who lead the league in points last year with 106, has started this season out with another offensive surge. Aucoin scored two of the club’s four goals and also picked up an assist, bringing his point total to five in the team’s second game of the year. Also scoring for the Bears were Brian Fahey (1+0) and Andrew Gordon (1+0), with Gordon solidifying the win scoring the game winner with only minutes remaining.
Michael Duco (1+0), Clay Wilson (1+1), Chris Clackson (1+0) led the offense for Rochester, each scoring goals in the second period. Both Evgeny Dadonov and Mike Kostka earned two assists each on Duco and Wilson’s goals in the game.
Goaltender Braden Holtby had 19 saves on 22 shots in the win. Netminder Jacob Markstrom, who was challenged with 35 shots, managed to save 31 in the losing effort.
After 21 minutes of play, the Bears were first to bite at the score, taking a 1-0 lead early in the second stanza. Aucoin, a 10-year pro, scored his second goal of the season. Gordon and Lawrence Nycholat both had helpers on the play.
Aucoin would lead the attack again for Hershey, this time short-handed at 12:43 of the second to increase the Bear’s lead 2-0. After making his way down the ice, Aucoin broke away and faced Markstrom unattested. Aucoin then managed to sneak the puck past Markstrom for an unassisted tally.
The Amerks would then take control of the game, taking a 3-2 lead and scoring three goals in two and a half minutes. The first would come from Duco, who scored his first goal of the season at 13:32 of the period on the power-play. Kostka and Dadonov set the play up for Duco who drilled the puck from the blue line past Holtby.
Rochester then tied things up at 14:41 of the period when winger Clackson scored his first goal of the season and his second point. The play started when Clackson leveled a Bear’s defenseman in the neutral zone, which brought the puck back into Amerks’ control. Wilson then passed the puck to Michal Repik who fed the puck to Clackson for the score.
The final goal of the second then came from defenseman Wilson who scored his second goal of the season and his first on the night. This goal would also be on the power-play and came at 15:48. Kostka and Dadonov who both had assists on the Amerks’ first goal, set up the puck nicely in front of the net for Wilson, who drilled the slap shot past Holtby to score the game-leading goal.
A little over halfway through the third period, at 9:42, Hershey evened out the score on the power-play. After Mathieu Perreault delivered him the puck, Fahey shoved it past Markstrom to tie it at three.
It wasn’t until 17:41 that the tie was broken when Gordon picked the puck up on a rebound and scored his first of the season. Kyle Greentree and Aucoin both received the assists. The Amerks were unfortunately unable to redeem themselves in the final moments, leaving the contest in a 4-3 decision.

The Amerks remain at home on Friday, October 15th as former Amerks coach Randy Cunneyworth leads his Hamilton Bulldogs to the Flower City for the first of 10 meetings between the North Division rivals this season. The 7:35 p.m. contest will mark Cunneyworth’s return to The Blue Cross Arena for the first time in three years since last serving as Rochester’s bench boss in 2007-08. The game will be carried live on SportsRadio 1280 WHTK and FM 107.3, Rochester’s Sports Talk. The contest will also be televised live on Time Warner Cable SportsNet Channel 26.
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