Paulin’s spectacular performance pulls Carolina to 2-1 win against Port Huron
Winston-Salem, NC – Kyle Kazeroid’s first professional goal proved to be the game-winner against the Prowlers on St. Patrick’s Day, but it was Chris Paulin’s 76-save performance that had Carolina feeling exceptionally lucky. His highest single-game save total was the difference-maker in the Thunderbirds’ 2-1 win on Thursday night.
Carolina was riding high after a trio of wins against the Delaware Thunder last weekend, and looked to bring that momentum home. Joe Cangelosi, one of the longest-tenured Thunderbirds, skated in his first game since November 13th. Despite both teams racking up an astounding 21 shots apiece in the first period, only one of them found the back of the net. Marvin Powell threw a wrist shot to the net from the left point, and Gus Ford deflected the puck past the goaltender Cory Simons for the 1-0 lead. Ford’s 33rd of the season carried Carolina into the 1st intermission with the advantage.
The second period followed a similar script to the first, with 44 shots being split evenly. The goals came a bit more freely, as Kyle Kazeriod grabbed the 2-0 seven minutes into period. Viktor Grebennikov threw the puck to the net, and Kazeriod swept it home for his first professional goal. The two-goal lead would only last 30 seconds, as Alex Johnson returned the favor for Port Huron. Johnson caught a pass in the left-wing circle from Larri Vartiainen and out-waited Chris Paulin before firing it home. The Prowlers had made a dent, but Carolina still carried the lead into the second intermission.
The third period saw no goals entered onto the score sheet, but quite a few shots. Chris Paulin and Cory Simons did their duties to near perfection, and a late defensive-zone stand by the Thunderbirds iced the 2-1 victory.
Carolina has now won four straight games. They play Port Huron for the second game of the weekend Friday night at 7:35. Former Thunderbird Jay Kenney will be honored prior to puck drop.