Thunderbirds Pounce Early, Beat Danville 4-3.
Winston-Salem, NC –Thunderbirds Pounce Early, Beat Danville 4-3.
How It Happened
Despite 7 previous meetings between the two teams, Thursday night would be the first visit for the Danville Dashers to Winston-Salem to play the Carolina Thunderbirds. So far in the season Danville holds a 4-3 advantage, and both teams are looking to get back to winning ways over this three-game series. The Thunderbirds and the Dashers are both 3-7 in their last 10 games, although Danville’s has been costlier, seeing them drop all the way into 5th place in the league standings.
Starting in net for the Dashers it would be Matt Kaludis, who is 8-6-1 this season, sporting a 3.60 goals-against average and a .890 save percentage. In net for Carolina it would be Kelly Curl starting. Curl has a 4-2 record with a 2.68 goals-against average and a .904 save percentage, both of which are best on the Thunderbirds.
The Thunderbirds would jump out offensively early on, taking it to the Dashers for the whole period. Carolina would get an early power-play at 6:30 of the frame when Dashers’ Ben Boukal would take a holding penalty. The Dashers would kill the penalty off, but the Thunderbirds would keep the foot on the gas. Shortly after Carolina forward Ray Boudiette would come racing down the far side and fire a shot low past Kaludis to make it 1-0 Thunderbirds. The goal is Boudiette’s 1st of the season and 1st as a Thunderbird, Jason Berube and Tom Kilgore would earn assists on the goal. Carolina would continue the pressure and skate into the intermission leading 1-0 and ahead 12-5 in shots.
The Thunderbirds would continue the offensive pressure, and break through once again early in the 2nd period. Josh Pietrantonio would battle through traffic in front of the net to send a backhand shot past Kaludis to make it 2-0. Ray Boudiette and Tom Kilgore would assist on the goal. Danville would find their legs however when at 7:53 of the period Chase Fallis would take a holding minor penalty, shortly followed by a Ray Boudiette tripping minor at 8:15. On the ensuing 5-on-3 the Dashers would score, when Glen Patterson would find the back of the net, Brandon Whalin and Justin Levac assisting on the goal. Just 6 minutes after the Dashers would tie the game up when Justin Brausen would score on the rebound, making it 2-2. Levac and Harrison would assist on the goal, but Carolina would re-take the lead. With 53 seconds left in the period Jason Berube would make an inside-out move around the defenseman and beating Kaludis short-side to make it 3-2 Carolina. Headed into the break it would be Carolina still with the shot advantage, 38-21.
The 3rd period would play out much more dramatically than the previous two, with each team getting a goal. Early in the frame it would be Michael Bunn rifling a shot over Kaludis’ shoulder to take a 2-goal lead, 4-2. Mike Henrici and Jiri Pestuka would assist on the goal. The Dashers would respon to make things interesting, Justin Levac would score at 8:37 of the period to make it 4-3, no assists were given to the score. The Dashers would keep attacking, however a very late penalty by Glen Patterson would sink the Dashers, who would have to skate 2 minutes of the last 2:07 short-handed. The game would end 4-3 Carolina.
In the loss Kaludis would stop 47 of 51 shots, while Kelly Curl would stop 35 of 35 in the win.
Ray Boudiette’s 1st period goal is his 1st of the season and as a Thunderbird.
The starting line of the Thunderbirds( Pietrantonio, Berube, Boudiette) would combine for three of the four Carolina goals, and 7 of the 12 points.
Back in Action
The Thunderbirds will continue their homestand on Friday, and Saturday, January 19 and 20 against the Danville Dashers. Friday’s game will start at 7:35 pm, with the doors opening an hour early. Saturday’s game is Veteran’s Appreciation night, the Thunderbirds will wear specialty jerseys and former or active military members can get 4 tickets for $20 with a valid ID. For tickets and more information please visit www.carolinathunderbirds.com or call 336-774-GOAL(4625).