Carolina Comes from Behind, Take Down Danbury in OT, 3-2
Winston-Salem, NC – For most of Friday night, the Carolina Thunderbirds were trailing. Going to the 3rd period, Carolina was outshooting the Danbury Hat Tricks, 28-15, but trailed 1-0. In the 3rd, Carolina tied it but fell behind again before a late goal forced overtime before the Josh Koepplinger won it 1:41 into overtime, taking the 3-2 win for Carolina.
In the 1st period, Carolina (22-8-1) fell behind with just under six minutes remaining. Zach Pamaylaon beat Cody Karpinski on a tip-in in front giving Danbury (17-12-3) the 1-0 lead. The Hat Tricks held that advantage through 40 minutes before Carolina broke through in the 3rd.
Just 94 seconds into the final frame, Josh Koepplinger snapped one off the bar and in over Liam Murray tying the game at one. Despite countless chances, Danbury regained the lead on a breakout with another tip-in from Jarod Yau at the 7:41 mark, moving the Hat Tricks back in front, 2-1.
The Thunderbirds kept pressing, and with 2:03 remaining in regulation, Jan Salak floated a shot over the glove of Murray, tying the game at two and sending the two sides to overtime.
Following an early rush from Danbury in the overtime, Salak drove to the front of the net getting a shot away on Murray who let out a rebound for Koepplinger to bury completing the comeback and taking the 3-2 overtime win.
In the victory, Koepplinger was named the 1st star with two goals on the evening with Salak picking up two points and 2nd star honors. Murray was named the 3rd star saving 49-out-of-52 shots.
Following the victory, the Thunderbirds and Hat Tricks meet for the regular season finale on Saturday evening. Puck drop is set for 6:05 p.m. from the Annex in Winston-Salem.