Jackals top Evansville
The Elmira Jackals earned a dramatic 3-2 overtime win over the Evansville IceMen on Friday Night at First Arena. The Jackals' comeback from an 0-2 deficit was capped by Ben Blood's first pro goal. The win improved Elmira to 18-15-3 on the season.
The first period got off to an inauspicious start for the Jackals when the IceMen scored a fluky goal off of a faceoff. Evansville's Nathan Moon pushed the puck forward toward goalie Marc Cheverie's crease. The Jackals' netminder attempted to cover the puck with his pads but it squirted from underneath him and Anthony Nigro pounced to put Evansville on the board at 4:30. Elmira settled in to the rhythm of the game and launched nine shots in the period on IceMen goalie Paul Karpowich but could not tally the equalizer in the session.
In the second Evansville capitalized on a 4-on-4 to stretch its lead to two. Working off of the left wing, Nigro picked up his second point of the night by hitting Jake Obermeyer on the right hash. The IceMen defender beat Cheverie with a one-timer to the glove side with 4:44 off of the clock. This time the Jackals would not be denied the tying goal. Dustin Gazley sprung Artem Demkov on breakaway a few minutes after Obermeyer's goal. Demkov's first shot was stopped by Karpowich but the Jackals center followed up on the rebound and notched his team-leading 21st of the season. Gazley's assist extended his point streak to nine games. Cheverie stopped 12 of 13 in the second and gave Elmira a shot at the tying goal in the third.
Not to be outdone by Gazley, Andrew Rowe helped to set up Elmira's tying score and extended his assist, and point, streak to nine games. Rowe worked a high cycle with defenseman Justin DaCosta on the right wing. Carrying down the wall, DaCosta saw Gazley on the doorstep and hit him with a crisp pass. The tap-in goal was Gazley's 11th of the season and gave the Jackals a ton of life. Just over a minute later Elmira picked up its second power play of the night and managed six shots on the advantage, but Karpowich stymied each one. Despite a 16-shot total in the third the Jackals had to wait for overtime to go for the win.
With all of the open ice in 4-on-4 play, Blood worked his way from the Jackals' zone to the high slot in in Evansville ice. He beat a defender with a deke as he cut to the middle and rifled a shot high glove side that lifted Elmira to the win. The Jackals mobbed Blood in celebration on the wall and Jordan Pietrus grabbed the puck from the net so that Blood had the appropriate souvenir.
Cheverie won his 10th decision of the season by stopping 26 shots. The Jackals were 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 Saturday, Jan. 12, 2013 to take on the Evansville IceMen at 7:05 p.m. Join the Jackals a rally towel giveaway! Get to First Arena early because the first 1,000 fans through the door will receive a complimentary rally towel. 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.