It wasn’t déjà vu. Despite having a 2-0 goal lead heading into third period and outplaying their opponent, fans couldn’t help and wonder if they were reliving the Rebels previous home game against Wilkes-Barre/Scranton when they had the same lead but ended up losing the game.
Dean Balsamo, Kristofers Bindulis and Frank Spellman made sure there was no repeat.
The Rebels completely dominated the first period but had nothing to show for it. While they had 10 shots on goal, they couldn’t get anything past Johnstown Tomahawks goalie Andrew Lindgren.
With no score heading into the second period, Bindulis came up the far side boards and passed it to Connor Wood to help set up a two on one advantage. As Wood and Evgeny Yakovlev entered the offensive zone, Wood drew the defenseman towards him and sent a nice saucer pass onto an open Yakovlev who one-timed it pass Lindgren putting the Rebels up 1-0.
Then with 4:48 left in the second period Johnstown’s Niko Coffman was called for tripping sending the Rebels on the power play. Kennett Square native Mike Merulla took a feed from Spellman and Ryan Cusin to give the home team a 2-0 lead.
As the second period came to an end, Wood took an unsportsmanlike conduct penalty putting the Tomahawks on the power play to start the third. As the Johnstown power play was ending, Andrew Romano and Ryan Burr were part of a scrum in front of the Rebels net enabling Drew Doyaon to pick up the loose puck and put it past Darion Hanson. Five and half minutes later, Luke Lynch fed Tommy Horn with a nice pass who drop passed the puck for Brendan Jaquay who beat Hanson on a long-side shot tying the game.
With less than four minutes to play and the Rebels outplaying the Tomahawks, Balsamo brought the puck up the near side boards and sent a cross-ice feed to Bindulis who made some nice moves as he entered the Johnstown zone. As he split the defense, Bindulis found an open Spellman who one-timed it past Lindgren giving the Rebels a 3-2 lead.
Once the Rebels took the lead, they clamped down and only allowed Johnstown to have two shots on goal with four minutes remaining. Hanson finished the game with 18 saves. Click here for the box score.
The teams faceoff again tonight at 7:00pm. It is Ed Snyder Youth Foundation night. Anyone who brings new or used hockey equipment receives a ticket for $6. All equipment will be donated to the Ed Snyder Youth Foundation.