For Immediate Release:

February 23, 2019



Goaltender makes 37 saves in OT setback in Peoria

PEORIA, Ill. – Jacob Caffrey made 37 saves, Travis Armstrong had a pair of assists and Jeff Jones netted his team-leading 16th goal of the season but the Rail Yard Dawgs fell to the Peoria Rivermen in overtime, 4-3, Saturday night at Carver Arena.

Peoria struck first while working on a power play. The Rivermen won a faceoff and cycled the puck to Kevin Patterson on the left wing. He blasted a one-timer that got through traffic and snuck by Caffrey to make it 1-0.

The Rail Yard Dawgs answered late in the first period when Brian Rowland kept a clearing attempt in at the blue line. He wristed shot toward the net and Jones stuck his stick in to redirect it through the legs of Storm Phaneuf, tying the game at one.

Roanoke grabbed the lead in the second with a power play tally. Armstrong sent a shot toward the net from the blue line that was blocked in front but Zach Nieminen picked up the loose puck. He spun and fired it through Phaneuf, making the score 2-1.

But Peoria answered about five minutes later while working on a power play of their own. Nick Neville fired a shot from the point and Mike Gurtler deflected it in front of the net. The puck trickled through Caffrey and the Rivermen evened the score at two.

Peoria snagged the lead back in the opening minutes of third period as Neville slung another shot from the point that Caffrey blocked with his pad. Gurtler got the inside position for the rebound, however, and poked it in for his second goal, putting Peoria on top, 3-2.

It took Roanoke less than a minute to answer with another power play goal. Cal Miska shot one from the high slot and Steve Mele swooped toward the net and deflected the shot. It bounced past Phaneuf and the Dawgs tied the game at three.

Peoria ramped up the pressure throughout the third and hurled 19 shots on Caffrey’s net in the period. They could not beat him again however and the game moved to overtime, still tied at three.

In overtime, the Rivermen had the first chance when Austin Vieth sprinted in on a breakaway, worked to his backhand and was stoned by Caffrey. Roanoke was unable to capitalize on its goaltender’s play though and Peoria buried its next chance. Guillaume Naud fired a wrister that snaked through traffic and beat Caffrey for the game-winning goal and the Rivermen took the extra point and the game, 4-3.

Caffrey made 37 saves on 41 shots, Armstrong had two assists and Mele, Nieminen and Jones each scored in the overtime loss. The Dawgs record moved to 20-18-4 while Peoria improved to 33-4-5. Roanoke will finish its season series with the Rivermen on Sunday afternoon. Puck drop is scheduled for 3:05 PM CST at Carver Arena.