HERSHEY 3, NORFOLK 1
After celebrating their 2009 Calder Cup championship, the Hershey Bears began defense of the title on Saturday with a 3-1 win over Norfolk before 10,075 fans at Giant Center. Andrew Gordon tallied a hat trick for the Bears, and reigning AHL MVP Alexandre Giroux assisted on all three goals.
Gordon, coming off a 21-goal sophomore pro campaign in 2008-09, registered all three of his markers on the power play Saturday, as the Bears finished 3-for-6 with the man advantage.
He scored at 3:12 and 15:12 of the opening period, and after Norfolk’s Blair Jones brought his club within a goal early in the third stanza, Gordon completed his hat trick at the 9:30 mark.
Giroux got himself off to a fast start with the three helpers after pacing the AHL with 97 points (60-37-97) during the 2008-09 campaign.
MANCHESTER 6, ALBANY 3
Rookie Andrei Loktionov potted a hat trick and added an assist in his first professional game as Manchester doubled up host Albany, 6-3, on Saturday at the Times Union Center.
Loktionov scored twice in the opening period and once in the third frame for the Monarchs, who also received tallies from Brandon Segal, Gabe Gauthier, and defenseman Joe Piskula. Manchester registered three goals apiece in the first and third periods.
BINGHAMTON 5, HARTFORD 3
Three-time AHL All-Star Martin St. Pierre registered a hat trick in his Binghamton debut, and the Senators topped visiting Hartford by a 5-3 count at the Broome County Arena.
St. Pierre, who boasts three 20-goal AHL seasons on his resume and who played in the 2008 All-Star Game in Binghamton, gave the Sens an early 2-0 lead with a pair of goals in the first 9:18 of the contest. He also closed the game’s scoring with a power play goal midway through the third frame.
Senators goaltender Mike Brodeur earned the win with 25 saves on 28 shots.
WORCESTER 3, ADIRONDACK 2
Worcester scored a pair of power play goals late in the third period to rally for a 3-2 road win over Adirondack, spoiling the Phantoms’ opening night at the Glens Falls Civic Center.
Worcester’s Andrew Desjardins began the night’s scoring just 3:08 after the opening face-off. The Phantoms got on the board when Andreas Nodl scored at 9:09 of the second and then took their lone lead of the contest on a Patrick Maroon tally 2:27 into the third.
Sharks goaltender Alex Stalock earned the victory with 27 saves on 29 shots in net.
SPRINGFIELD 5, PORTLAND 2
Five different players scored as Springfield opened its season with a 5-2 win over visiting Portland on Saturday at the MassMutual Center.
Chris Minard, coming off a career-high 34-goal season for Wilkes-Barre/Scranton last year, registered a goal and an assist in his Falcons debut.
Adam Henrich, Liam Reddox, and defenseman Taylor Chorney also posted a goal and a helper for Springfield, while Charles Linglet rounded out the scoring. Ryan Potulny and defenseman Chris Armstrong each chipped in a pair of assists.
The Falcons went 3-for-5 on the power play while holding Portland 0-for-7, and Springfield goaltender Devan Dubnyk stopped 31 of 33 shots in the winning effort.
Defenseman Marc-Andre Gragnani registered both goals for the Pirates.
BRIDGEPORT 4, LOWELL 3 (OT)
Defenseman Andrew MacDonald scored 2:54 into overtime to lift Bridgeport past visiting Lowell before 8,480 fans at the Arena at Harbor Yard.
The Sound Tigers grabbed three separate one-goal leads over the course of the game, but each time the Devils rebounded to tie it.
New Bridgeport goaltender Scott Munroe earned the win with 30 saves in net.
MILWAUKEE 3, CHICAGO 2
Milwaukee registered a three-goal second period and then held on for a 3-2 road win over Chicago before 10,010 fans at Allstate Arena.
The Admirals entered the second period trailing 1-0 and left it with a 3-1 advantage. Triston Grant, Mark Santorelli, and Ian McKenzie each lit the lamp for Milwaukee, with Santorelli’s goal coming on the power play.
Chicago’s Rylan Kaip cut it to 3-2 with a shorthanded goal 4:49 into the third period, but the Wolves were unable to find the equalizer. Tim Stapleton initially gave Chicago a 1-0 lead just 1:03 after the opening face-off.
Milwaukee goaltender Mark Dekanich began his second pro season by stopping 28 of 30 shots in the winning effort.
GRAND RAPIDS 3, PEORIA 1
After falling into an early 1-0 hole, Grand Rapids notched three unanswered goals to open its season with a 3-1 road win over Peoria on Saturday at Carver Arena.
Dick Axelsson, who assisted on Delmore’s goal, added an empty-net marker on the power play in the game’s closing seconds.
Griffins goaltender Thomas McCollum, a first-round draft pick by Detroit in 2008, picked up the win in his professional debut with 23 saves on 24 shots.
Ryan Reaves tallied the Rivermen’s lone goal at 6:32 of the opening period.
LAKE ERIE 3, ROCHESTER 2 (OT)
Philippe Dupuis’s second goal of the night came with just six seconds left in overtime, completing Lake Erie’s comeback from a 2-0 deficit and sending the Monsters to a 3-2 road win over Rochester on opening night at the Blue Cross Arena.
The Americans registered a pair of special teams goals to build their 2-0 advantage. After Monsters goaltender Tyler Weiman was whistled for delay of game just 1:44 into the contest, defenseman Clay Wilson capitalized with a power play goal at 3:07.
Kenndal McArdle then tallied a shorthanded goal at 11:46 of the second period to make it 2-0.
But Brian Willsie potted a shorthanded marker of his own for Lake Erie at 17:45 of the second, and Dupuis tied it at even strength 10:55 into the third.
Two-time Calder Cup champion Darren Haydar picked up the lone assist on Dupuis’s overtime winner for his first point in a Lake Erie uniform.
Weiman earned the win with 25 saves in net
TEXAS 3, SAN ANTONIO 2 (OT)
Greg Rallo’s goal at 4:45 of overtime sent the crowd home happy as Texas bested San Antonio by a 3-2 count before 6,221 fans in the first regular-season game at the Cedar Park Center.
The Stars avenged a 3-2 loss to the Rampage a night earlier in San Antonio and earned their first win in franchise history.
Defenseman Ivan Vishnevskiy tallied his second goal in as many nights for the Stars, and Perttu Lindgren also lit the lamp. Both of those goals came in the opening period, and San Antonio’s Shaun Heshka scored in between.
It remained a 2-1 Texas led until 17:33 of the third period, when Rampage forward Kevin Porter registered his first goal of the season to tie it and ultimately send the contest to overtime.
Stars goaltender Matt Climie picked up the victory with 33 saves on 35 shots.
WILKES-BARRE/SCRANTON 4, SYRACUSE 2
Wyatt Smith scored twice and added an assist as Wilkes-Barre/Scranton opened its season with a 4-2 win over visiting Syracuse before 7,147 fans at the Wachovia Arena.
Penguins goaltender John Curry stopped 25 of 27 shots to earn the win.
HOUSTON 4, MANITOBA 2
Pete Zingoni netted a pair of goals as Houston doubled up Manitoba by a 4-2 count, earning a split of the teams’ two-game opening-weekend series.
Zingoni scored once in the first period and once in the second for Houston, the latter on the power play. Defenseman Justin Falk also scored for the Aeros, and Clayton Stoner sealed the win with an empty-netter in the game’s closing minute.
Aeros goaltender Anton Khudobin picked up the victory with 26 saves in net.