Dill holds Elmira scoreless on the weekend, Birds win again

ELMIRA, N.Y.- The defending Commissioner’s Cup champion and proud member of the Federal Prospects Hockey League Carolina Thunderbirds defeated the Elmira Enforcers 2-0 on Saturday night in New York.

“It’s a great feeling to prove to people that the number one team in the league is still the Carolina Thunderbirds,” said head coach Andre Niec.

Things were chippy from the outset. In the first period, Ahmed Mahfouz slashed Carolina goalie Henry Dill across the chest and was met with a cross-check to the face from defenseman Doninik Fejt. Fejt was assessed a major penalty and was ejected. Mahfouz played the rest of the first period, but did not return after that-- his status is still uncertain. 

Stanislav Bachor opened the scoring for the Thunderbirds, notching a powerplay marker with five minutes to go in the second period. It’s Bachor’s second point in as many games and his first professional goal.

“It felt amazing to get that goal,” said Bachor, grinning ear to ear.

Henry Dill dazzled between the pipes once again, going a perfect 28-for-28 to log his second straight shutout.

“I mean, I was just thinking about that, it’s special to go that long without allowing a goal for sure,” said Dill.

Stanislav Vlasov scored his first goal of the season in the third period, a one-timer setup by Michael Bunn who had two assists in the game. Another man-advantage tally, the Carolina powerplay was 2/6 on the night.

At the end of the game, Christian Whitcomb grabbed Henry Dill and began a line-brawl that saw Elmira’s bench empty nearly completely into the Carolina defensive zone. Four Enforcers were sent to the locker room with 7.6 seconds left.

“That was my first [fight], my adrenaline is still going,” admitted Dill.

“I mean, I didn’t want to hurt him or anything, but he kinda threw one at me and I was like, okay, let’s go here,” said Whitcomb.

Carolina’s Nigel Slade and Elmira’s Egor Babynin scrapped with three seconds to go and officials determined that it was in the game’s best interest to run the clock out without another puck drop, sealing the win for the Thunderbirds.

Carolina’s victory makes the 18-1-0-1 against Elmira all-time and ties them with Danville at the top of the Western Division at six points. The Thunderbirds remain on the road, traveling to face Delaware (1-1-0-0, 3 pts.) next weekend.

Elmira falls to 0-2-0-0 on the season. They will face Columbus in Georgia next week.