Carolina Handles Baton Rouge, 7-2

Winston-Salem, NC – After a 5-4 overtime loss to the Columbus River Dragons on Friday night, the Carolina Thunderbirds responded early and often against the Baton Rouge Zydeco, picking up a 7-2 win on Saturday night in Winston-Salem.

Carolina (30-11-2) jumped out of the gates quickly in the 1st period. At the 6:59 mark of the first frame, Dawson Baker snapped a shot through the five-hole of Baton Rouge (10-28-4) netminder Greg Harney to give the Thunderbirds a 1-0 lead. Less than two minutes later, Carolina doubled its advantage after Nate Keeley lifted a shot over the shoulder of Harney giving the Thunderbirds a 2-0 advantage. 56 seconds later while on the power play, Roman Kraemer blasted a one-timer past Harney giving the Thunderbirds a 3-0 lead at the end of the 1st period.

In the 2nd, the Thunderbirds found the back of the net for the fourth time, this time with Gus Ford who snapped a shot over the glove of Bailey Stephens for his 31st goal this season, making it 4-0. Baton Rouge did get on the board in the second with Bradley Richardson tapping in his second goal of the year on a 2-on-1 opportunity, but Carolina answered 18 seconds later. Keeley got his second of the night on a shot from the top of the circles building the lead back to four, 5-1, and Carolina coasted into the 2nd intermission with the four-goal advantage.

In the 3rd, both sides traded goals before Baker picked up his second goal of the night and the Thunderbirds rolled to a 7-2 victory, taking the three points on the evening.

Ford finished the night with four points on the evening good for his 21st multi-point game this season while Baker has now scored at least a goal in each of his last eight games. Mario Cavaliere in his return to the Thunderbirds stopped 28 out of 30 shots to pick up his 15th win on the season.

Carolina and Baton Rouge meet again on Sunday afternoon in Winston-Salem. Puck drop is set for 4:05 p.m. from the Annex.