Hershey Bears won their 12th American Hockey League title after Michael Vecchione scored off a rebound at 16:19 of overtime to end the game 3-2 in against Coachella Valley Firebirds in Game 7 of the Calder Cup final on Wednesday night.
Hershey overcame a 2-0 deficit with two goals in the second period then prevailed in overtime 3-2 with the game-winner coming from Mike Vecchione at 16:19.
Hershey coach Todd Nelson now has a second Calder Cup after guiding Grand Rapids to the 2017 title. He joined Bun Cook and John Paddock as the only head coaches to win Calder Cups with two teams.
Ryker Evans and Max McCormick scored for Coachella Valley while Joey Daccord made 35 saves. Seattle’s top farm club, the Firebirds was the first to reach the finals in their first season since the 2010 Texas Stars.
Evans scored the opener at 4:41 of the first period, beating Shepard with a shot off Andrew Poturalski’s pass from behind the goal.
McCormick doubled the lead to nill, 24 seconds into the second from a cross-ice feed from Kole Lind and beating Shepard through the legs from close range, making his 14th goal of the playoffs.
McMichael’s scored the first goal for Hershey with 6:08 left in the second. Then Lapierre tied it with 2:51 remaining in the period, tipping Vincent Iorio’s long shot past Daccord.
Goaltender Hunter Shepard was awarded the Jack A. Butterfield Trophy as the most valuable player of the 2023 Calder Cup Playoffs after making 45 saves.
Watch the full highlights below: