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Snively, Pilon Score in Preseason Opener

Sunday marked the opening night of preseason hockey for the Washington Capitals, who dressed a prospect-heavy lineup as they hosted the Boston Bruins

Snively, Pilon Score in Preseason Opener

WASHINGTON, D.C. – Sunday marked the opening night of preseason hockey for the Washington Capitals, who dressed a prospect-heavy lineup to host the Boston Bruins at Verizon Center. The game went to a shootout, and the Bruins prevailed by a 3-2 count in the skills competition. The Capitals got goals from a few faces familiar to fans in Hershey, as Joe Snively opened the scoring and Garrett Pilon tallied to tie the game at two. Pheonix Copley started the first two periods, and Vitek Vanecek played the third period and extra sessions, with the former stopping 12 of 14 and the latter stopping all nine and surrendering two of three in the shootout.

The scoring opened with a big goal for Snively, a D.C. area native who started playing for the Little Caps, buried a rebound off a shot by Martin Has with some assistance by Brian Pinho to open the scoring. Snively had 17 points with the Bears, including six goals during the 2020-21 season.

The Bruins would tally the next two goals from Jake DeBrusk and Eric Haula while splitting their crease between Jeremy Swayman and Troy Grosenick, who played the second half of the game the extra sessions. Grosenick made 11 saves on 12 shots, while Swayman made 18 of 19 fired his way. In the third, Pilon made a slick backhand shot off of a great passing play with Martin Fehervary and Hendrix Lapierre, picking up where he left off from a great 2020-21 season.

Of note, defenseman Dylan McIlrath was assessed a game misconduct in the third on a check to Steven Fogarty, who left the game as a result. McIlrath came across on Fogarty to make a hit, which the latter nearly avoided but got the brunt of McIlrath’s elbow. The Bruins got a five-minute major power play, but two penalties eliminated the majority of the call.

The Capitals’ fourth line showed a lot of promise in the game, helping to draw a few penalties featuring a good showing by Brett Leason, Beck Malenstyn, and Riley Sutter. Malenstyn looked to be in great shape in his return to play, while Leason helped to set up Sutter for a few good opportunities.

Washington plays five more games before the start of the season, starting on Wednesday night against the New Jersey Devils.

The Hershey Bears will host season ticket holder night this Thursday and begin preseason play on October 8. They will open their season on October 16.

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