Elmira clipped by Royals in shootout
The Elmira Jackals picked up a standings point for making it to overtime but fell 3-2 in a nine-round shootout to the Reading Royals in Sunday afternoon at First Arena. Elmira ended its three-in-three weekend with five of a possible six points and an overall record of 12-10-3.
The first period was evenly played between the Jackals and Royals. Reading had a slight edge in shots but the scoring chances were equally distributed. Reading captain Yannick Tifu was the only one to cash in an opportunity, though, as he used a breakaway to beat Marc Cheverie. After stealing the puck away in the high slot, Tifu used a wrist shot to put the puck through Cheverie's five-hole at 12:52 for his ninth goal of the season. Elmira tested Reading goalie Philipp Grubauer with eight shots in the first but was held without a score.
Elmira dialed up the offense early in the second period and used some nifty passing to take its first lead of the game. First Jean Bourbeau sent a crisp cross-ice feed from the left wing to Jack Downing who lifted a wrist shot over Grubauer and under the crossbar to tie the score. The goal came 3:58 into the second and at 5:24 Artem Demkov provided the go-ahead score. Benjamin Dieude-Fauvel started the play with a quick feed from the center point to Dustin Gazley low on the left wing. Gazley one-timed a pass to Demkov on the doorstep and he deposited it across the goal line. After a couple of successful penalty kills, Reading's David Vallorani scored from close range to tie the score with 5:31 left in the second, and that was how the teams went into the third.
Both teams turned their focus to the defensive side of the puck and were stingy in terms of allowing scoring opportunities. The Royals out-shot the Jackals 11-5 in the final stanza, but most of those shots came from on the perimeter and didn't give Cheverie much of a test. He turned away each of those attempts to keep the Jackals on even footing with the Royals. The Jackals' best scoring chances in the third came on a late surge but, like Cheverie, Grubauer stopped the Jackals at every turn and helped send the game to overtime.
In the extra session the teams continued to focus their efforts on playing sound defense and combined for just three shots on goal. A shootout was eventually needed to determine the winner. David Marshall and Denny Urban scored on Reading's first two shots, but Louie Caporusso kept the Jackals in striking distance with a goal in the bottom of the second. Cheverie stopped each of Reading's next three shooters so that Demkov could tie it in the bottom of the fifth. In the sudden-death rounds Grubauer and Cheverie each stopped the first three shooters before Kirk McDonald scored high blocker side on Cheverie and Grubauer stopped Kyle Bushee to seal the win.
Cheverie stopped 31 of 33 shots in his first overtime appearance of the season. Elmira was 0-for-3 on the power play and 2-for-2 on the penalty kill.
Mark your calendars! The Jackals are back on First Arena ice on Friday, January 4, 2013 to take on the Reading Royals at 7:05 p.m. Join the Jackals for Dave Clark Foundation night and help us celebrate his achievements! Groups of 10 or more are eligible for discounted tickets and preferred seating based on availability. Call 607-734-7825 to book your group outing. Pro-rated season ticket packages are on sale, as well. Season tickets offer the best value for Jackals fans.