Jackals win at Kalamazoo
The Elmira Jackals earned a standings point for the fifth game in a row thanks to a 2-1 win over the Kalamazoo Wings on Wednesday night. The win improved Elmira's record to 20-15-4 on the season.
Neither team went without its scoring opportunities in the first period, but despite their best efforts it was goalies Maxime Clermont and Joel Martin stealing the show. Martin had the most sparkling saves including on the first shift of the game as Louie Caporusso cut across the crease looking to stuff the puck in. Caporusso also set up Artem Demkov on a 2-on-1 later in the period only to have Martin pad away Demkov's one-timer. Clermont, in his first game against the team he started his pro career with, had to be razor sharp in the first as Kalamazoo tested him with 16 shots.
Kalamazoo broke the scoreless tie early in the second period when Nick Sirota squeezed a shot through traffic and past Clermont at the 1:09 mark. That goal only seemed to infuriate the Jackals as they responded by launching 22 shots on Martin in the second, but were turned away at every opportunity. The most impressive was a sprawling Dominik Hasek-like save on a deflection by Brandon Blandina near the midway point of the second. At the very end of the period Rob Bellamy was awarded a penalty shot when he was hooked from behind on a breakaway with six seconds to go. It was the first penalty shot Elmira earned this season, but Martin shut that one down, too, and kept Kalamazoo in the lead headed to the third.
Elmira had authored two prior third-period comeback wins on the season (out of 12 tries), and it looked unlikely that tonight would be the third. Working off of the rush, Artem Demkov spun a pass to Dustin Gazley cutting through the slot. The Jackals' all-star had an open net to shoot for but rang it off of the post and wide. Just a few moments later, though, Kevin Harvey lifted a perfectly placed wrist shot over Martin's shoulder and under the cross bar to tie the score with 6:56 to play. Elmira found itself in murky water a few moments after that when the Jackals took a pair of penalties 57 seconds apart. But with some timely deflections and saves by Clermont the Jackals worked out of the penalty kills and had a chance to win in regulation. Matt Campanale made a crisp pass to Caporusso at center and he found a multitude of open ice. He swerved wide around a defender, cut across the crease, and stuffed the puck in with 36 seconds to play to give Elmira its first lead of the night. It was a near carbon copy of his near score from the first period.
Clermont captured his ninth win of the season with a 37-save effort. The Jackals were 0-for-3 on the power play and 6-for-6 on the penalty kill.
Mark your calendars! The Jackals are back on First Arena ice on Friday, Jan. 18, 2013 to take on the Trenton Titans at 7:05 p.m. Join the Jackals for a visit from the ZOOperstars! You'll love the wacky antics of the world's greatest sports entertainment show. 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.