ROANOKE, VA. – The Rail Yard Dawgs (13-7-3) overcame a pesky performance by the Knoxville Ice Bears (8-13-2) on New Year’s Eve in a 5-4 overtime win at Berglund Center. Dom Marcinkevics notched the game-winning goal, while Alex DiCarlo, CJ Stubbs, Xavier Filion, and Brenden Stanko also scored for the Dawgs. 

Roanoke dominated the first period, outshooting Knoxville 20-5 in the opening frame. It took until the 13:00 mark for Roanoke to open the scoring, when a 3-on-2 odd-man rush led to a rebound goal for DiCarlo. Derek Osik quickly answered with a rebound finish of his own at 14:58, but the Dawgs reinstated their lead on a power play goal by Stubbs thanks to a great assist by Nick Ford at 18:27. Roanoke took a 2-1 lead into the first intermission.

The second period saw Knoxville ease its way into the game a little bit, as Roanoke’s control on the game slipped a bit. The Dawgs kept peppering shots at Knoxville goaltender Troy Kobryn, who kept turning the Dawgs away. At 12:18, Justin Portillo tallied his first goal of the year for the Ice Bears to tie the game. Despite a 36-16 shots on goal advantage and plenty of offensive zone possession time, Roanoke would enter the third period still tied at 2-2 with visiting Knoxville.

The Ice Bears took their first lead of the game at 4:22 on another goal by Osik, making it 3-2 for the visitors. Roanoke quickly pulled the game back square again when Filion sniped the puck from the left wing circle off of a nice feed by defenseman Brendan Pepe. A long bounce on a save by Kobryn created another odd-man rush for Knoxville at 9:50, and Rex Moe tallied a rebound goal to give Knoxville its lead back at 4-3. At 13:54, Roanoke’s Josh Nenadal slipped a pass from the left goal line to the slot for Stanko to tie the game again at 4-all. The Dawgs outshot Knoxville 15-5 in the period and 51-21 in regulation, but overtime was still needed in the Star City.

It didn’t take long in overtime, as a quick turnover by Knoxville in the Roanoke zone was pushed up by Filion and Pepe. Pepe passed the puck to the right wing for Marcinkevics, whose shot rattled off of Kobryn’s body for the game-winning goal just 22 seconds into the extra frame.

Austyn Roudebush made 17 saves on 21 shots faced for Roanoke, while Kobryn stopped 47-of-52 shots faced for Knoxville. Roanoke was 1-for-2 on the power play, while Knoxville went 1-for-2. 

The Rail Yard Dawgs will stay next Friday night, January 5, to take on the Birmingham Bulls. Puck drop is slated for 7:05 P.M. EST at Berglund Center, 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: Tim Lester Images