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AHL Quick Hits: Bears, Pirates meet up in Hershey

LOOKING BACK:
On Tuesday night, Brad Moran and Alexandre Bolduc each had a goal and an assist in Manitoba’s 4-1 win at Peoria… Barry Brust made 24 saves to lead Houston past Rockford, 3-1… On Monday, Vladimir Dravecky scored twice and Kevin Dallman recorded four assists as Manchester edged Milwaukee, 5-4.

Mon 2/4
MANCHESTER 5, Milwaukee 4

Tue 2/5
Manitoba 4, PEORIA 1
Houston 3, ROCKFORD 1


LOOKING AHEAD:
A capacity crowd at the Giant Center will be on hand Wednesday to watch Hershey host Portland in a rematch of their classic 2006 Eastern Conference Final series… First-round pick Eric Fehr, who currently has points in four straight games for the Bears (2-2-4), scored the series-clincher in overtime of Game 7 two springs ago… Hershey comes in 4-0-0-2 in its last six games, locked in a three-way tie for second place in the East Division… 2008 AHL All-Star Joe Motzko, who played 34 games for Portland last season and hoisted the 2007 Stanley Cup in Anaheim, leads the Bears with 34 points (16-18-34)… 2008 AHL All-Star Andrew Ebbett has a team-high 49 points (10-39-49) for the Pirates… Portland’s Bobby Ryan, the second overall draft pick in 2005 and a 2008 AHL All-Star, ranks third among league rookies with 36 points (16-20-36)… Ryan’s first pro goal came off Frederic Cassivi in Game 6 of that ’06 playoff series.

An inter-conference battle sees Milwaukee visit Providence on Wednesday for the teams’ first meeting since Feb. 20, 2002… Reigning Rbk/AHL Player of the Week Cal O’Reilly extended his scoring streak to seven games (2-12-14) with an assist in Milwaukee’s 5-4 loss at Manchester on Monday, while Josh Langfeld scored for the fifth time in four games… Admirals goaltender Pekka Rinne, who played for Bruins head coach Scott Gordon’s PlanetUSA team at last week’s AHL All-Star Classic, leads the league in minutes played (2,564) and ranks second with 23 victories… Fellow Finn Tuukka Rask, an All-Star teammate of Rinne’s, has won 10 of his last 13 decisions and is 17-5-0 on the year for Providence… Wacey Rabbit scored three times during the Bruins’ five-goal third period en route to a 6-3 win over Worcester on Sunday; Rabbit, who scored three goals in his first 55 career AHL contests, has five goals in four games since.

Norfolk, which is 4-0-1-1 in its last six games, looks to continue its mid-season resurgence when it opens a six-game homestand against Wilkes-Barre/Scranton on Wednesday… The teams have split their first six meetings this season, including the Admirals’ 4-3 win in Wilkes-Barre on Saturday… Norfolk has played five consecutive one-goal games, including four which extended past regulation… Rookie center Paul Szczechura has a point in all eight games (6-6-12) since joining the Admirals from Iowa on Jan. 15, and he brings a five-game goal-scoring streak into Wednesday… Junior Lessard, a 2006 AHL All-Star who arrived in Norfolk in the same deal as Szczechura, has a three-game scoring streak (1-3-4) and a point in five of his last six outings (3-4-7)… Rookie winger Radek Smolenak has found the scoresheet in seven straight games for the Ads (4-4-8)… Chris Minard has a goal in three straight for the Penguins and paces the club with 20 markers on the season (20-15-35)… Tim Brent leads Wilkes-Barre/Scranton with 28 assists and 37 points, and he has a goal in his last two contests.

(all times Eastern)
Wed 2/6
Manchester @ Hartford, 7:00
Portland @ Hershey, 7:00
Philadelphia @ Binghamton, 7:05
Worcester @ Lowell, 7:05
Milwaukee @ Providence, 7:05
Syracuse @ Rochester, 7:05
W-B/Scranton @ Norfolk, 7:15
Lake Erie @ Hamilton, 7:30
San Antonio @ Toronto, 7:30
Houston @ Quad City, 8:05

Thu 2/7
Manitoba @ Rockford, 8:05


ALUMNI WATCH:
On Tuesday, AHL rookie goal-scoring leader Brian Boyle netted his second goal in as many NHL games to help Los Angeles past the N.Y. Rangers, 4-2… Antero Niittymaki improved his head-to-head record to 8-0-0 as a professional against Kari Lehtonen (including 4-0 in the 2005 Calder Cup Finals), making 23 saves in Philadelphia’s 3-2 win at Atlanta… David Brine notched an assist for his first NHL point in Florida’s 8-0 win over Toronto… On Monday, 2008 AHL All-Star T.J. Hensick recorded his second straight two-goal game for Colorado in a 4-3 loss to Phoenix.


BY THE NUMBERS:
.878
— Combined points percentage of the Toronto Marlies (21-1-1-1) and the San Antonio Rampage (19-2-2-2) when scoring the game’s first goal… The clubs meet at Ricoh Coliseum on Wednesday.


AHL ON B2 NETWORKS:
B2 Networks brings AHL action to your computer all season long with live video webcasts of every AHL game… Visit theahl.com for details.