by Rob Lippolis

DANBURY – Another third-period comeback fell short for the Binghamton Black Bears in an 8-5 loss on Friday night to the Danbury Hat Tricks.

Steve Mele opened the scoring with a rebound goal just 3:45 into the game. Dustin Jesseau took a shot from the left circle and Mele put home the rebound after the original save by Joe Sheppard. The goal was assisted by Jesseau and Zachary Lazzaro and was Mele’s tenth of the year. 

After Binghamton was denied an opportunity, Jonny Ruiz came back down the ice and beat Sheppard for a 2-0 lead. Ruiz’s goal was his 42nd of the season and came at 13:39 of the opening period with the lone assist going to Dustin Jesseau. 

Tom Mele finished off the first-period scoring with a breakaway goal to give Danbury a 3-0 lead. The goal was his 11th of the year, unassisted, and came with just 1:26 left in the period. The Black bears were outshot by Danbury in the first 20 minutes, 18-9.

Dustin Jesseau started the scoring in the second period with a great individual effort to give Danbury a 4-0 lead. Jesseau went around the defense and beat Sheppard for his 16th of the season with assists from Adam Dauda and Steve Mele at 4:58.

Joe Sheppard left the game with an injury later in the period and was replaced by Owen Liskiewicz. Binghamton answered back at 12:25 of the second as Colan Fitzgerald scored his third goal of the season at 12:25. The lone assist was credited to Geno DeAngelo and the Black Bears trailed 4-1.

Cory Anderson added a goal at 13:28 and Jonny Ruiz scored his second of the game at 19:43 and Danbury took a 6-1 lead into the second intermission. 

Binghamton mounted another comeback in the third period as Tyson Kirkby, Tyler Gjurich, Emil Strom, and Thomas Aldworth all scored to get the Black Bears within two goals with a 7-5 score. However, Adam Dauda added an empty-net goal late for the 8-5 win. 

The Black Bears are back home tomorrow night, and they’ll be wearing special St. Patrick’s Day themed jerseys against Danbury at 7 p.m. Also, the first 1,000 fans get a FREE Black Bears Scratch-Off Card for your chance to win tickets, merchandise, gift cards, and more! The kid’s corner between section ten and eleven will also have activities too! Get your tickets at 

Stay current with the latest team news by visiting, by calling 607-722-7367, or visiting the front office on the third floor of the Visions Veterans Memorial Arena. Follow the Black Bears all year long on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram.