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River Rats, Bears, Wolves each move up 2-0

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ALBANY 3, WILKES-BARRE/SCRANTON 2
Albany defenseman Jamie McBain broke a 2-2 tie with 4:02 left in regulation, and the River Rats went on to a 3-2 win over Wilkes-Barre/Scranton on Friday at the Times Union Center, giving the Rats a 2-0 lead in their East Division semifinal.

The series now shifts to Wilkes-Barre for the next three contests, beginning with Game 3 on Sunday afternoon.

Drayson Bowman and Mike Angelidis assisted on McBain’s game-winner, which marked his second goal in as many games this postseason.

Nick Dodge netted his third goal of the series and added an assist for the River Rats, and Chris Terry also scored in the winning effort. Bryan Rodney, Casey Borer, and Jay Harrison contributed an assist apiece for Albany.

River Rats goaltender Justin Peters stopped 27 of 29 shots to pick up the victory in net.

Eric Tangradi put the Penguins on top 1-0 late in the first period, and after the Rats grabbed a 2-1 lead, Konstantin Pushkarev tied it at 14:50 of the third frame. But McBain notched his decisive goal just 1:08 later.

Wilkes-Barre has now dropped four straight playoff games dating back to the 2009 East Division Finals against Hershey.

HERSHEY 3, BRIDGEPORT 2
AHL regular-season goal-scoring champion Alexandre Giroux brought Hershey out of a pair of one-goal deficits, and Mathieu Perreault’s third-period power play goal lifted the Bears to a 3-2 win over Bridgeport before 10,112 fans at the Giant Center.

With the victory, the Bears took a 2-0 series lead in their East Division semifinal, which shifts to Bridgeport for Game 3 on Saturday and Game 4 on Sunday.

Perreault’s game-winning goal, which came on the power play at 7:06 of the third period, was assisted by Andrew Gordon and defenseman Bryan Helmer.

It marked the Bears’ second victory in as many games this series in which they trailed heading into the final 20 minutes of play.

Giroux notched his second and third goals of the series for the Bears, and 2009 Calder Cup Playoffs MVP Michal Neuvirth earned the win with 23 saves in his 2010 playoff debut.

2010 AHL All-Star defenseman Dustin Kohn scored both goals for the Sound Tigers, who have now dropped all four meetings with the Bears this year, including the regular season.

CHICAGO 3, MILWAUKEE 0
Chicago goaltender Peter Mannino turned in a 23-save shutout performance as the Wolves took a 3-0 win over visiting Milwaukee on Friday at Allstate Arena.

The Wolves claimed a 2-0 series lead in the best-of-seven West Division semifinal, which shifts north to Milwaukee for Game 3 on Saturday night.

Spencer Machacek provided all the offense Chicago would need when he scored unassisted on the power play with just 1:10 left to play in the first period.

After a scoreless middle stanza, Johnny Pohl provided insurance for the Wolves 8:06 into the third period, with Jason Krog and defenseman Arturs Kulda picking up assists.

Tim Stapleton closed the game’s scoring at the 15:14 mark off assists by Joey Crabb and Matt Anderson.

Mannino, who went 26-5-1 with two shutouts during the regular season, stopped 10 shots in the first period, six in the second, and seven in the third en route to the victory.