November 5, 2017 - Federal Hockey League (FHL) - Carolina Thunderbirds
Winston-Salem, NC - The Thunderbirds opened their home season in emphatic fashion, hosting a sold-out crowd at the Winston-Salem Fairgrounds Annex. They would go on to defeat the North Shore Knights by a score of 3-2.
The first period was a back and forth affair, but it would be the Knights who would strike first. After a steal in the offensive zone, Tyler Becker would wire a shot home, over the shoulder of Thunderbirds Netminder Kelly Curl to make it 1-0 with 4:42 remaining in the 1st period. The Thunderbirds would respond just seconds later at 4:28 of the period when Dalton Jay would fire a sharp angle shot off the pads of Knights goaltender Christian Pavlas to tie the game. The game wouldn't stay tied for long, when with just 19 seconds left in the 1st, Tom Kilgore would take a drop pass in the slot from Rick O'Connor and fire it home to give the Thunderbirds a 2-0 Advantage. CJ Blaszka would also have an assist on the goal.
In the 2nd period the Knights would come out strong, and after a strong check on Justin Blaszak, Patrick Porkka would have to answer the bell against Daniel Chang, with Chang being assessed an added 2 minute instigator penalty. On the ensuing power-play the Knights would score again, as Radoslav Konecny would tally to tie the game at 2. The Thunderbirds would storm back and regain momentum, and with 6:02 remaining, Dalton Jay would earn his 2nd point of the night as he fired a smart shot off the pads of Pavlas that would rebound onto the stick of Jan Salak, who would tap it home for the eventual game winner. The 3rd period was scoreless and punctuated with end to end action, but after Rick O'Conner was given a penalty shot on a trip, he would be denied by a strong poke check from Pavlas.
The Thunderbirds would skate to the win in front of a crowd of 3,050, capacity for the Fairgrounds Annex. Pavlas would make 37 saves in the loss, with Curl stopping 28 out of 30 and earning the win in his home state.
The Thunderbirds next game is Saturday, November 4, as they will take on the Knights once again. Puck drops at 6:05 pm EST, for more information visit www.carolinathunderbirds.com
CORNWALL NATIONALS at WATERTOWN WOLVES
Caranci Leads Wolves to 5-4 Overtime Win Over Nationals
The Watertown Wolves opened their 2017-2018 against the Cornwall Nationals at the Watertown Municipal Arena Friday night.
The goal lights came alive in the second period after a scoreless first period, with each team scoring three goals. Cornwall's Ahmed Mahfouz put the Nationals on the board first. Wolves rookie Corey Scott tied the game up at 1 with an assist from Stephen Gallo. Watertown took the lead and extended it with goals from Veteran Matt Caranci's and rookie Wolf Jason Berube. Cornwall's last two goals in the period came from Tom Tsicos and Cam Bakker.
The Wolves took the lead back early in the third period with a short-handed goal from Cameron Dimmitt. A power play goal from Ahmed Mahfouz tied the game up for Cornwall and send the game to overtime. The Wolves made it a short overtime with Matt Caranci scoring the game-winning goal just 24 seconds into the overtime ending the game with a 5-4 score.
The Watertown Wolves are back in action Friday, November 10 at the Watertown Municipal Arena when they take on the Carolina Thunderbirds. The puck will drop at 7:30pm.
PORT HURON PROWLERS at DANVILLE DASHERS
Dashers Hold off Prowlers, 5-3
Physicality is the word. The word to use to describe the game between these two teams. The hitting started early and often as the battle for the puck raged on in the corners and at the boards.
A center ice collision sent #81 Sean Reynolds for the Dashers off of the rink as he was put through concussion protocols. He was briefly knocked unconscious and was taken to a local medical facility for further evaluation.
Port Huron set the tempo early winning the faceoff battle in commanding fashion. Both teams putting up scoring chance after scoring chance with flurries of offense set up by hard skating and reckless abandon at times.
The scoring started early in the first period with Jimmy Soper putting the puck past goalie Cory Simons with 4:08 ticked off of the clock in the period.
From that point on it was a back and forth. Both teams skating like madmen for the puck and racking up the scoring chances. The second period saw two goals scored, one a piece for each team. Dustin Jesseau made a one on one attempt to pull the score even. With 4 seconds left in the period, Jimmy Soper would net his second goal of the evening to bring the Dashers back up by one heading into the final period.
The third period saw more of the same from both teams, with five goals scored in the period. Shayne Morrisey scored two goals in a row for the Dashers to answer the tying goal from Ian Hoang for the Prowlers.
Matt Graham would then score to bring Port Huron within one and the game got even more physical from that point. Both teams skating and hitting, swarming and protecting, playing their guts out to determine a winner. Jimmy Soper would bring and end to that struggle with 2:56 left to go in the game with the hat trick goal that would ultimately lead to the Dashers Victory.
These two teams will battle again tomorrow night in Danville at 7:00, with Port Huron looking to avenge this hard fought loss and the Dashers looking to improve to 3-1.