Jamestown, NY – The thought process following last night’s game from Rebels Head Coach Joe Coombs was that contribution was needed throughout more of the lineup for continued success. It’s safe to say it happened, as six different goal scorers propelled the Rebels (18-25-1-2) to a weekend sweep of the Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Knights (20-20-4-1) by a final score of 6-1 on February 8th at the Northwest Arena.
“I’d say for the best part, yeah, we rolled through ’em pretty good,” said Coombs about his team’s victory. “We’re scoring, which for a lot of the first half we weren’t. There’s still improvement – there’s lots there – but we’re gonna keep going about our business and work our process. I’d say that this is the first time all year long on back-to-back nights that we had all our 18 guys, and we’ll keep getting better.”
The Rebels opened the scoring early on in the first period with a goal from Valentino Passarelli, his eighth of the year, to take the 1-0 lead. Nick Siffringer continued his hot streak about 7 minutes later with his 12th goal of the season, increasing the Rebels’ lead to 2-0 at 12:02 of the first period. Wilkes-Barre would answer back shortly after, however, as Zak Currie tucked one past goaltender Noah West to cut the Knights’ deficit in half, 2-1. With the period drawing to a close, captain Eric Olson came through again with his team-leading 17th goal of the season to give the home team a 3-1 lead heading into the second frame.
Second period action was tight and physical, and the Rebels were able to capitalize on the power play, as Carter Korpi sniped Knights goaltender Zach Stejskal top shelf for his third goal of the year, increasing the lead to 4-1. Coombs has liked what he’s seen as of late from his team on the competitive side of the game.
“We call it depth of outlet,” said Coombs. “So our first guy is on the puck, and the guy he’s on passes it away. Before we were all chasing the puck, so then it just blows past us. Now, we’re at the right depth and now there’s confrontation. Are we physical, no, but are we competing on that puck, are we 1 on 1 battling with that puck, yeah we are.”
The goals kept flowing for the Rebels in the third and final period, as Jordan Cormier increased the Rebels’ lead to 5-1 with a breakaway goal at 9:03 of the period, his seventh tally of the season. Seth Bergeron finished things off as the sixth different goal scorer of the night for the Rebels, putting home his third goal of the season, giving the home team the 6-1 lead that would stand as the final score.
Goaltender Noah West once again stood tall, turning away 26 of 27 Wilkes-Barre shots on route to his 12th win of the season. Along with the goals, four different Rebels compiled multi-assist games as well; Bergeron (13, 14), Passarelli (11, 12), Noah Finstrom (22, 23) and Danny Magnuson (4, 5) all added two assists in the victory. Olson (16), Siffringer (12), Renars Karkls (7) and Kaden Varga also put up one assist each.
With the victory, the Rebels earned their fourth weekend sweep of the season, and third on home ice as they leap-frogged Maine into 5th place in the East Division. Jamestown has also won 7 of their last 9 total games. The next set of games will prove a tough test for Coombs’ team, as the Rebels will travel to face the second-place Johnstown Tomahawks next weekend, but Coombs believes his team can be up to the task.
“We’ve played them well, we’ve played them hard,” said Coombs regarding Johnstown. “It’s a tough building to go into, but I think with a good week of preparation, we can certainly go in there and worry about the first one.”
The Rebels face-off with the Tomahawks in Johnstown next Friday, February 14th at 7:45pm and Saturday, February 15th at 7:00pm. Be sure to follow the Rebels on social media for news and score updates.