Courtesy: Brian Gardner, Rail Yard Dawgs
– The Knoxville Ice Bears scored twice in the third period to come from behind and beat the Roanoke Rail Yard Dawgs, 3-2, Friday night at Berglund Center. Joe Sova and Riley Spraggs each scored for the Dawgs in the loss.
Roanoke got on the board first in the first period. Matt Beer kicked the puck to Steve Mele along the left wing boards. Mele then lofted a pass to Joe Sova, who blasted a one-timer past Troy Davenport to give the Dawgs a 1-0 lead.
Knoxville evened things up early in the second. From just inside the attacking zone, David Brancik fed the puck to Stefan Brucato on the right wing. He stepped in and fired a shot over the left shoulder of Matt Zenzola, tying the game at one.
Late in the second period with the teams skating four-on-four, Cam Bakker received a pass in the high slot. He darted the puck to Riley Spraggs in tight. Spraggs roofed a backhander over Davenport to give Roanoke a 2-1 lead going into the second intermission.
Knoxville again tied the game near the halfway point in the third on a Kristaps Nimanis slap shot from the point. The Ice Bears took the lead late in the third when Marcus Ortiz fed Dean Yakura off a rush. Yakura’s wrist shot sailed past Zenzola, pushing the score to 3-2.
The Dawgs had chances late in the third period, notably after Knoxville committed a penalty with just 3:03 remaining on the clock. Roanoke was unable to put anything else past Davenport however as they came up short in a 3-2 loss.
Sova and Spraggs both scored while Bakker picked up his first point as a Rail Yard Dawg. Zenzola made 19 saves on 22 shots while Davenport stopped 26 of 28 to earn the win in net.
Roanoke moved to 11-19-3 with the loss while Knoxville improved to 20-11-2. The Rail Yard Dawgs and Ice Bears will complete their home-and-home weekend set on Saturday night in Knoxville. Puck drop at the Knoxville Civic Coliseum is scheduled for 7:35 PM.