ROANOKE, VA. – The Rail Yard Dawgs (21-9-4) kept the pressure on late, but couldn’t find a tying goal in a 4-3 loss to the Peoria Rivermen (23-8-4) at Berglund Center on Thursday night. Matt O’Dea, Jacob Kelly, and Brenden Stanko scored goals for Roanoke.

Roanoke would strike first in the opening period, as O’Dea’s long-range missile went top shelf at 7:02 to give the Dawgs the lead. It looked like the hosts would get a chance to add on to their lead a few minutes later when Roanoke received its first power play chance, but Peoria wrestled the momentum away. Two shorthanded goals within 40 seconds by J.M. Piotrowski and Joseph Drapluk gave the Rivermen the lead 2-1 by the 12:26 mark. Those two scores were the first two shorthanded goals conceded by the Dawgs this season. Roanoke trailed by one heading to the intermission, despite outshooting the Rivermen 14-13.

The second period was dominated by the Rivermen, as they held Roanoke to just five shots on goal. The tilted possession time that favored Peoria led to another goal for the Rivermen, as a shot from distance by Cale List at 8:35 rattled off the post and in to make it 3-1. The Dawgs conceded two power play chances, trailing by two scores, and would still be shorthanded after the second intermission concluded.

The Dawgs came out firing in the third period. A poor turnover by the Rivermen led to a shorthanded breakaway for Kelly, and he made it a 3-2 game just 17 seconds into the final frame. Another quick goal set up by Roanoke’s Hunter Hall allowed Stanko to roof his shot into the Peoria cage, tying the game at 3-3 at the 1:04 mark. The Rivermen reinstated their lead at the 4:17 mark, as Jordan Ernst squeezed his shot between the helmet of Austyn Roudebush and the top left corner of the Roanoke net to make it a 4-3 game. The Dawgs kept knocking on the door and had chances to tie the game, but Peoria prevailed to take down the victory in regulation.

Roudebush saved 27-of-31 shots faced for Roanoke, while Nick Latinovich saved 28-of-31 shots faced for Peoria. Roanoke went 0-for-3 on the power play, while Peoria went 0-for-2 on its chances. 

The Rail Yard Dawgs will hit the road on Friday night, February 2, to take on the Macon Mayhem. Puck drop is slated for 7:00 P.M. EST at the Macon Coliseum, and you can watch the game on Flo or listen for free on Mixlr. Ticket packages, group tickets, and single game tickets are on sale now by contacting the Rail Yard Dawgs office or visiting the Berglund Center box office.

Photo Credit: Bryar Turner