Bears jump out to series lead over Checkers

Photo: Gregg Forwerck

Hershey opened its Calder Cup pursuit with a 5-2 win over Charlotte in Game 1 of the teams’ Atlantic Division semifinal series on Friday night.

The Bears take a 1-0 lead in the best-of-five series into Game 2 on Saturday evening.

Mike Vecchione, Aliaksei Protas, Hendrix Lapierre and Connor McMichael scored to give Hershey a 4-0 lead by the 4:03 mark of the second period in their first game since wrapping up their regular season 13 days ago.

Hunter Shepard made 22 saves to earn the win in his Calder Cup Playoff debut.

Defensemen Lucas Carlsson and Santtu Kinnunen scored for the Checkers.

Atlantic Division Semifinals (best-of-5)
A2-Hershey Bears vs. A3-Charlotte Checkers
Game 1 – Fri., Apr. 28 – Hershey 5, CHARLOTTE 2
Game 2 – Sat., Apr. 29 – Hershey at Charlotte, 6:00
Game 3 – Wed., May 3 – Charlotte at Hershey, 7:00
*Game 4 – Thu., May 4 – Charlotte at Hershey, 7:00
*Game 5 – Sun., May 7 – Charlotte at Hershey, 5:00
*if necessary… All times Eastern