Elmira downs Carolina in shootout

WINSTON-SALEM, N.C.- The Carolina Thunderbirds, proud members of the Federal Prospects Hockey League and 2019 Commissioner’s Cup champions, fell to the Elmira Enforcers 4-3 in the shootout on Saturday night at the Annex.

“I think losing tonight really opened some players eyes,” said head coach Andre Niec.

Jan Krivohlavek scored his 11th goal of the season at the 12:01 mark of the first period. The Thunderbirds collected over 5500 teddy bears that were thrown onto the ice following the goal during their third annual teddy bear toss night.

Elmira answered with 4:15 remaining in the period when Cameron Yarwood scored.

With only 27 seconds left in the period. Michael Bunn poked in a rebound for a powerplay goal to give Carolina the lead.

During a chippy second period, Elmira took the lead on goals from Brendan Tucker and Sean Reynolds.

Again, Carolina answered the late bell when Daniel Klinecky scored the team’s sixth shorthanded goal of the year with just 13 seconds left in the period.

The third period saw the Thunderbirds hammering away at Troy Passingham who finished the game with 45 saves.

“He played a great game,” said Andre Niec, “he was a big part of the reason they won.”

Both teams had chances in overtime, but neither converted.

In the shootout, Dustin Skinner and Jan Salak traded goals through the first five shooters. Dustin Skinner was recycled in the sixth inning of the shootout and scored to win the game for Elmira.

For Elmira, they secure their first win in Winston-Salem in franchise history.

Carolina now stands at 15-1-0-1 with 43 standings points still atop the league. Elmira improves to 7-7-2-1 with 26 points.

The two teams have completed their season series and will not face each other again during the regular season.

Carolina will next play Mentor on the road Dec. 20-21.