by Rob Lippolis

BINGHAMTON - Nikita Ivashkin scored a hat trick in the first period and Joe Sheppard stopped 32 of 33 shots in an 8-1 victory for the Binghamton Black Bears over the visiting Port Huron Prowlers in front of 4,110 at Visions Veterans Memorial Arena on Friday night.

Nikita Ivashkin kicked off the scoring just 4:16 into the game to give the Black Bears a 1-0 lead. After several big saves, Ivashkin move to the top of the crease and slid the puck through the legs of goaltender Greg Harney for the lead. Assists were credited to Josh Newberg and Kyle Powell. 

Ivashkin struck again to give the Black Bears a 2-0 lead at 10:10 of the first period. Sam Holeczy and Kyle Stevens forced a turnover and sent the puck to Ivashkin who ripped a shot over the shoulder of Harney for the two-goal advantage.

Binghamton took a 3-0 lead as Stevens slammed home a rebound after Geno DeAngelo was stopped by Harney. Stevens’ goal was his third of the year with assists from DeAngelo and Corey Sherman and came at 14:22 of the first period. 

Gavin Yates got in on the action with help from Powell to push the Black Bears out to a 4-0 lead. Yates skated down the left side of the ice and ripped a shot on the short side over the right shoulder of Harney. The goal was Yates’ second of the year with the lone assist going to Powell at 15:04 of the first.

Ivashkin capped off the first-period hat trick at the 16:45 mark to give Binghamton a 5-0 lead. Holeczy and Tyler Becker were given the assists and the Black Bears took that lead into the first intermission along with a 23-13 shot advantage.

In the second period, Ivashkin set up Holeczy on the side of the net to give Binghamton a 6-0 lead. After receiving the puck at the hash marks, Ivashkin dished it over to Holeczy who tapped in his first of the year with the other assist going to Egor Nosov.

Nosov got in on the scoring with a hard wrist shot from the right-wing circle to put Binghamton up 7-0. The goal was Nosov’s fourth of the year, unassisted, at the 6:20 mark of the second and the Black Bears took that lead into the third frame.

Each team scored in the third period as Justin Levac ended the shutout bid with a goal for Port Huron and Stevens scored another for the 8-1 final score. Joe Sheppard stopped 32 of 33 shots for the win.

The Black Bears return home tomorrow against Port Huron! New York football fans can come meet Super Bowl Champs, Mathias Kiwanuka and Jay Alford! Also, live music on the concourse and happy hour drink specials from 5:30 p.m. until puck drop at 7:00 p.m. 

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.