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Justin Vaive Scores Teddy Bear Toss Goal in 5-4 Win

January 7, 2022 - ECHL (ECHL) - Cincinnati Cyclones News Release


Cincinnati, OH - Justin Vaive scored the teddy bear toss goal to begin the night for the Cyclones, who saw a 2-0 deficit eventually turn into a 5-4 win over the Fort Wayne Komets Friday night inside Heritage Bank Center.

The Cyclones have won three straight and six of their last seven games, improving to 18-11-1-0 on the season. The club breaks a tie with the Komets and now sit alone in second place in the Central Division standings. Fort Wayne falls to 16-9-3-0.

- The first three goals of the game came 37 seconds apart. Fort Wayne's Matt Alvaro started the scoring by connecting with a one-timer deep from the slot to give the Komets a 1-0 lead and a 4-on-3 power play goal. 20 seconds later, Oliver Cooper won a loose puck to the left of Cyclones keeper Sean Bonar to find the back of the net, extending the Komets lead to 2-0 on the short-handed tally.

- 17 seconds later, it was Vaive for the Cyclones who managed to win a stick battle for the puck in front of the net, chopping in his ninth goal of the season during a power play sequence and cutting the deficit in half. Vaive's goal sparked 5,136 Cyclones fans who began to toss their teddy bears and other stuffed animals to the Heritage Bank Center ice.

"There's a lot of emotion with it being a big weekend and a big night," said Vaive. "Everybody is looking for that first goal so we can get the crowd into it, more so this weekend than any other, so I was just fortunate to get that bounce off the rebound and score to cut into their (Fort Wayne's) momentum and get the teddy bears flying."

- Cincinnati posted a three goal second period to take a multi-goal lead. Patrick Polino would get a pass from center by Dajon Mingo to streak down the ice for the game-tying-goal just over a minute into the frame, before Lincoln Griffin tallied consecutive goals at the 5:18 and 17:37 mark of the frame again Fort Wayne's Mario Culina. The second-year pro has points in six of his last seven contests and posted his first career multi-goal game.

- The Komets got back within one on a loose puck found mid-air by Zach Pochiro just over two minutes into the third period, making it a 4-3 game.

- Past the midway point in the final period, Dillon Hill and Marcus McIvor each were penalized, thus giving the 'Clones some 5-on-3 time to operate with on a power play. Mingo uncorked a one-timer from above the left circle, beating Culina and just scraping past the goal line to give the Cyclones a two goal lead once more. The Komets struck again later in the frame to pull within a goal, but Cincinnati held on for the 5-4 win.

- Sean Bonar made a plethora of quality saves in the first period and stopped 28 shots overall on the night. He is 4-2-0 in a Cyclones jersey. Culina took the loss in his Komets debut making 16 saves.

Throwback Weekend continues Saturday night as the Cyclones welcome Kalamazoo to the Queen City for their first matchup with the K-Wings in 2022.

Stay tuned all season for updates on important events, player signings, promotion and ticketing information and MORE! Call (513) 421-PUCK for tickets and more information, and stay on top of all the latest team updates and information on Facebook, Twitter (@CincyCyclones), and Instagram, along with our website, www.cycloneshockey.com!


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