Top line sends Bears to Game 4 victory

Photo: Tori Hartman

PALM DESERT, Calif. ( … The line of Hendrix Lapierre, Ethen Frank and Joe Snively provided the Hershey Bears with all of the offense they would need to even the Calder Cup Finals with a 3-2 win in Game 4 at Acrisure Arena on Thursday night.

With the best-of-seven series tied at two games apiece, the teams will square off in a pivotal Game 5 on Saturday here in Palm Desert (9 ET, AHLTV, NHL Network).

Lapierre and Frank each had a goal and two assists and Snively added a goal and an assist as the Bears’ top line combined for eight points on the night.

Frank’s 10th goal of the playoffs came with 1:23 left in the opening period to give Hershey a 1-0 lead for the third time in the first four games of the series.

Shane Wright answered 9:40 into the second period with the teams playing 4-on-4, netting his second goal in as many games. But the Bears regained on Lapierre’s goal with two minutes to play in the middle stanza.

Coachella Valley pulled even again during another 4-on-4 situation when Ryker Evans scored 32 seconds into the third, but Hershey grabbed the lead for good on Snively’s power-play goal at 4:21.

Hunter Shepard stopped 22 of 24 shots in the win for the Bears, while Chris Driedger made 22 saves in a losing effort for the Firebirds.

NOTES: Attendance was 10,087, the second sellout crowd at Acrisure Arena this postseason… The loss was the Firebirds’ first at home this postseason (7-1)… Pat Monahan, lead singer for the band Train, and his son Rock performed the national anthem before the game, and 2024 American Idol winner Abi Carter performed during the first intermission… Game 6 will be played Monday evening in Hershey.

(Series tied, 2-2)
Game 1 – Fri., June 14 – Coachella Valley 4, HERSHEY 3
Game 2 – Sun., June 16 – HERSHEY 5, Coachella Valley 2
Game 3 – Tue., June 18 – COACHELLA VALLEY 6, Hershey 2
Game 4 – Thu., June 20 – Hershey 3, COACHELLA VALLEY 2
Game 5 – Sat., June 22 – Hershey at Coachella Valley, 9:00
Game 6 – Mon., June 24 – Coachella Valley at Hershey, 7:00
*Game 7 – Wed., June 26 – Coachella Valley at Hershey, 7:00
*if necessary… All times Eastern