Jamestown, NY – Lead by five different goal scorers and a 30-save effort from goaltender Noah West, the Rebels (21-29-1-2) defeated the East Division’s top team in the New Jersey Titans (36-13-0-1) by a final score of 5-3 on March 6th at the Northwest Arena.
While shots were even at nine a piece in the first period of play, it was the home team who came out hot, grabbing an early 1-0 lead off the stick of Carter Korpi, his fifth goal of the season, just 1:08 into the game. Tyler German kept things rolling shortly after, potting his third goal of the year to up the Rebels’ lead to 2-0.
“We came out tonight ready to play,” said Rebels Head Coach Joe Coombs. ” I thought we had a really good first [period]. We had some timely scoring, and I thought we checked better than they did.”
New Jersey would take advantage of a power play mid-way through the period, as Matthew Iasenza put home his 12th of the year, but just 4 minutes later Jamestown would answer again, as veteran d-man Seth Bergeron tucked home his fourth of the year to re-gain the two goal lead for the Rebels.
Second period action saw an uptick in shots on goal and in competitiveness, highlighted by a fight between Jamestown’s Ian Carpenter and New Jersey’s Cam Gendron. The Titans would find the only goal of the period shortly after, however, as Chris Garbe brought the visitors back within one, 3-2, at the 13:09 mark.
Timely scoring came again for Jamestown, as Janis Vizbelis added his seventh goal of the season just 1:05 into the final period to once again put the home team up by two goals, 4-2. Nearly 7 minutes later, New Jersey would again find themselves on the power play and again converted, as Cade Penny found the back of the net to draw the Titans back within a goal for the third time.
Then, Titans goaltender Patrick Pugliese made a costly mistake by losing the puck to Rebels forward Liam Hansson, who deposited the error into the visiting net, his ninth of the season, giving the Rebels their two-goal lead back once again, and prompting Titans coach Craig Doremus to pull his Top Prospect-goaltender in favor of backup Ryan McInchak. The Rebels poured 16 total shots on net during the third period, and would eventually secure the 5-3 victory with five different goal scorers leading the charge, something Coombs likes to see.
“You expect guys to struggle – we replaced 19 guys and of course have had more changeover than that – so you expect guys to start to get it in the second half, and certainly they have,” said Coombs.
Noah West earned his 15th win of the season by stopping 30 of 33 New Jersey shots. Joe Teasdale (5, 6), Liam Hansson (21, 22) and Jordan Cormier (10, 11) all registered two assists each, while Carter Korpi (7) and Janis Vizbelis (6) added one assist each as well.
With the victory, the Rebels have now defeated the top-placed Titans, who have clinched a playoff berth, in three straight meetings, dating back to home victories on February 21st and 22nd. The Rebels currently sit two points back of Maryland for the final East Division playoff spot, while Maryland still holds two games in hand on Jamestown.
The Rebels will once again host New Jersey on Saturday night, March 7th for Pucks & Paws Night, where fans can bring their dog to the game. Puck drop is set for 7:05pm.