Hershey Bears Eastern Conference Finals Game 6 preview

HERSHEY, Pa. (WHTM) – The Cleveland Monsters held off elimination again on Saturday in Ohio and now the series will shift back to Hershey at the GIANT Center for Game 6 of the Eastern Conference Finals tonight, Monday, June 10, with the Bears leading 3-2.

Series so far

The series’ first two games required overtime to get the job done. The Bears took the first three games of the series, but Cleveland rallied back in games four and five to stay alive in the Calder Cup Playoffs.

  • Game 1: 5-4 Hershey, OT

  • Game 2: 3-2 Hershey, OT

  • Game 3: 6-2 Hershey

  • Game 4: 3-2 Cleveland

  • Game 5: 5-1 Cleveland

In game five Hershey opened scoring courtesy of Logan Day’s first of the playoffs 12:11 into the game, but the Monsters responded with five straight goals. Alex Whelan tied the game in the second period and Josh Dunne earned a power-play goal to give Cleveland the 2-1 lead at 9:35 of the second. Brendan Gaunce netted two goals at 11:49 and 16:29 to extend the Monsters’ lead and Dunner scored his second of the night for the 5-1 final.

Hershey has outscored Cleveland 17-16 and outshot the Monsters 164-146 in the series. The Bears ate 29.2% on the power play and 78.9% on the penalty kill.

Bears drop game five of Eastern Conference Finals 5-1

Top performers

Center Hendrix Lapierre is leading in points for the Bears and is second in the Calder Cup Playoffs with 13 points. Right winger Ethern Frank follows him with 12 points and Chase Priskie with 11 points as the top performers for the Bears.

Frank has been the top scorer in the Cleveland series with four goals and an assist.

Priskie’s 11 points leads all league defensemen in the postseason. Priskie has earned a point in each Bears victory for the 2024 playoffs and the Bears have lost every game when the defensemen doesn’t register a point.

Frank has scored the most goals in the postseason for Hershey with 9 goals followed by Ivan Miroshnichenko with six and Garrett Roe with five.

Cleveland is led by Josh Dunne with 11 points (7 goals, 4 assists) and Justin Pearson with 11 points (2 g, 9a).

In net, Bears goalie Hunter Shepard has started every game this postseason and is boasting a 0.917 save percentage with a 2.18 goals-against average. Cleveland’s Jet Greaves is tied for the best save-percentage in the playoffs with 0.927. Greaves owns a 2.19 GAA.

The stakes

The Bears again have a chance to advance to the Calder Cup Finals tonight with a victory. If Hershey wins tonight, they will make their league-leading 25th Calder Cup Finals appearance. If Cleveland wins tonight, Game 7 will take place at the GIANT Center on Wednesday to decide who will advance.

The winner of the Eastern Conference Finals will face the Coachella Valley Firebirds to battle for the Cup. The Firebirds took the series against the Milwaukee Admirals 4-1 with a 5-1 victory on Saturday. The Bears defeated the Firebirds to clinch the cup last season and end a 13-year Cup drought.

Hershey is 6-0 at home for the 2024 Calder Cup Playoffs.

How to watch

The puck drops tonight at 7 p.m. EST at the GIANT Center. For fans who can’t attend in person, the game will be available on Monumental Sports Network, AHLTV and Caps Radio 24/7.

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