Pheonix Copley made 41 saves in his professional playoff debut and Nate Schmidt scored the winning goal with 2:21 to go in the third period as Hershey defeated Worcester, 4-1, in Game 1 of the teams’ Eastern Conference quarterfinal series at the DCU Center in Worcester on Friday night.
Game 2 of the best-of-five series is Saturday.
The contest turned with 2:43 remaining in a 1-1 game when the Sharks’ Jeremy Langlois was assessed a major penalty and game misconduct for checking Bears defenseman Steve Oleksy from behind into the end boards. Just 22 seconds into the ensuing power play, Schmidt picked off a Worcester clearing attempt and snapped a shot past Aaron Dell (20 saves) to give Hershey its first lead of the night.
Micheal Haley scored the only goal for the Sharks, coming on a power play late in the first period.
Eastern Conference Quarterfinals – Series “B” (best-of-5)
2-Hershey Bears vs. 7-Worcester Sharks
Game 1 – Fri., Apr. 24 – Hershey 4, WORCESTER 1
Game 2 – Sat., Apr. 25 – Hershey at Worcester, 7:00
Game 3 – Wed., Apr. 29 – Worcester at Hershey, 7:00
*Game 4 – Fri., May 1 – Worcester at Hershey, 7:00
*Game 5 – Sun., May 3 – Worcester at Hershey, 5:00
*if necessary… All times Eastern