NEWARK, NJ (WHTM) – Hershey Bears goalie Hunter Shepard was called up to the Washington Capitals on Wednesday where he made his National Hockey League debut in the Capitals 6-4 win over the New Jersey Devils.

Shepard blocked 18-of-22 shots in net for Washington.

The Cohasset, Minnesota native is the 65th Hershey Bear to make an NHL debut with the Capitals since they became affiliated before the 2005-06 season.

This season, Hardy Häman Aktell also debuted with the Capitals on Oct. 21. Shepard however is the first Bears goalie to debut with Washington since Zach Fucale on Nov. 11, 2021.

With Hershey this season Shepard has a 2-0-0 record with a 2.88 goals-against average and a .885 save percentage.

Last season, Shepard went 20-8-5 across 33 games with a 2.18 goals-against average, a .916 save percentage and one shutout.

On the way to the Bears Calder Cup Championship, Shepard had a 14-6 record in the playoffs with a 2.27 goals-against average, a .914 save percentage and three shutouts. In the crucial Game 7 overtime victory to clinch the Calder Cup, Shepard had 45 saves.

Shepard was crowned the 2023 Calder Cup Playoffs Most Valuable Player.