Courtesy: Brian Gardner/Rail Yard Dawgs
ROANOKE, VA – Ty Reichenbach made 37 saves for his first professional victory, Dmytro Babenko and Zach Tatrn each scored in the third period and the Roanoke Rail Yard Dawgs defeated the Columbus Cottonmouths, 2-1, Tuesday night at the Berglund Center. The Rail Yard Dawgs kept their postseason hopes alive with the victory.
With the game still scoreless early in the third period, Phil Bronner slid a pass to Cody Walsh at the blue line. Walsh fired a wrist shot toward traffic in front of the Columbus net for Tatrn to reach out his stick and deflect the puck past Spencer Bacon, putting the Rail Yard Dawgs on the board.
Roanoke would pad its advantage nearly five minutes later. Evan Schultz deked his way to the net and was stopped by Bacon but the rebound squirted loose. Babenko sprinted after the puck, banked it off a Columbus defender and into the net to extend the lead to 2-0.
Meanwhile, Reichenbach was a brick wall in the Rail Yard Dawgs net. The Cottonmouths peppered him with 34 shots through the first 55 minutes and came up with nothing. They finally broke through when Chad Brears poked a rebound in from a sharp angle with just under five minutes to play in the third, cutting the deficit to one.
Columbus would pull Bacon for the extra attacker in the final minutes of the third but could not crack Reichenbach again. He finished with 37 saves on 38 shots and the Rail Yard Dawgs held on for the 2-1 victory.
Roanoke improved to 17-28-9 with the win while Columbus fell to 21-29-4. The Rail Yard Dawgs trail the Cottonmouths by three points for the eighth and final playoff spot with both teams having two games to play. Roanoke's elimination number remains at one. The Dawgs need to win both of their remaining games and to have the Cottonmouths to fall twice in regulation in order to reach the postseason.
The Dawgs will now hit the road for Macon and their final road trip of the regular season. Roanoke will clash with the Mayhem on both Friday and Saturday night. Friday's puck drop is set for 7:35 PM at the Macon Coliseum.