Enforcers Streak Broken, Lose to Wolves 4-3 in shootout
Scoring early once again, the Enforcers pushed down the ice and were successful in putting the puck past the Watertown net minder under 10 minutes into the 1stperiod when Stepan Timofeyev was able to score his third goal for the Enforcers this season. Timofeyev is a new member with Elmira this season, but a second year member of the FHL, playing last season with the Port Huron Prowlers, scoring 13 goals and adding 23 assists. The bad blood between these teams seemed to be at an all-time high tonight as the pushing and shoving was at a maximum. Things seemed to come to a full boil when Sam Williams of the Wolves was ready to drop the gloves, and it seemed as though there was going to be a fight, but the Enforcers ended up receiving a 5-on-4 power play, and Williams was boxed for a roughing minor. Watertown lead in the shot column 10-7, but once again Elmira goalie Passingham was on top of his game and the period finished with Elmira up 1-0. When scoring first this year, the Enforcers are very good at maintaining a lead and winning the game.
The Watertown Wolves weren’t going to go down quietly, that’s for sure. They came out with a fire under them as they scored two goals to take the lead within the first five minutes of the 2ndperiod. Scoring the first goal was Anton Kalinnin to tie the game up, and following him up to take the lead and seemingly the momentum was Egor Kostyukov. Not to be outdone, though, was none other than Stepan Timofeyev, who answered both of those goals with his second of the game, and that goal was huge in tying the game, and seemingly evening out the momentum. Sean Reynolds continued his hot season, scoring his eleventh goal on the campaign, and gave Elmira the 3-2 lead late in the period. Both teams were able to put plenty of shots on net, as the shot totals were in the double digits for both of them. Elmira was able to put up 14 shots in the period, while Watertown posted 17, ending the 2ndperiod with Watertown totaling 27 shots, while Elmira only had 21. As we all know though, shots don’t always equate to goals as Elmira finished the first 40 minutes still up 3-2.
The 3rdperiod was much of the same as both teams had their time with the puck. Neither team seemed to be able to pull away from the other as the time of possession seemed to be the same. The second half of the period seemed to be all Enforcers when it came to controlling the puck, but it was Watertown who was able to strike first in the last twenty of regulation as Anton Lennartsson put one past the sharp Passingham for the big goal that tied the game 3-3 with just 6 minutes left in the period. The 3rdperiod would finish with a tie as we would be headed to overtime. Elmira would lead this period in the shot column for the first time as they totaled 16 to Watertown’s 12.
Overtime was just as exciting as the rest of the game as both teams controlled the puck and took plenty of shots on net. Elmira would finish the game with 40 shots on net, and Watertown would be right there with them, leading in the shot column with 42 on the game. For the first time this season Elmira would be going to a shootout.
A shootout is one of the most exciting things in the game of hockey. Elmira would put a very competitive lineup out there, but unfortunately they would miss their first two shots, and Watertown did make their first two shots which puts the opposing team in quite a hole. Elmira would really need their third opportunity to be a goal, and unfortunately for them it wasn’t. Watertown did miss their next chance which did leave the door open for Elmira, and much like the rest of the game, Timofeyev did take advantage of his opportunity scoring their first goal of the shootout. Enforcers goalie Passingham was able to make a huge save in the next round, but unfortunately Elmira couldn’t capitalize and tie it up, so Watertown would take the game.
Unfortunately Elmira’s win streak will end at the 5 game mark. The Enforcers will be coming back home on January 4thand 5thto take on the Carolina Thunderbirds on Friday, and the Mentor Ice Breakers on Saturday. Elmira currently still sits in third place behind Carolina and Watertown. These next couple of games, especially Friday against Carolina, will be very important for them to make their move for 2ndplace in the standings.