The Rail Yard Dawgs won their fifth home game in a row on New Year’s Eve, bullying the first-place Huntsville Havoc 4-1 at Berglund Center.
Tommy, Pokorney, Matt O’Dea, Mac Jansen, and Brant Sherwood scored for the Dawgs, and Austyn Roudebush made 31 saves for the Dawgs.
The first period started slowly for Roanoke, but Roudebush kept the Dawgs in the game with outstanding goaltending. Jacob Barber opened the scoring on a breakaway at 11:11, but Pokorney fired back at 17:43 on a long laser from the point to tie the score at 1-1 before the first intermission.
The second period saw O’Dea score his second goal in as many nights, skipping a low shot from the high slot into the net to give Roanoke the 2-1 lead. That score held through the end of the period.
The third period became unglued as time continued to tick off of the clock. Jansen scored a power play goal from just outside of the paint in front of the Huntsville goal, and Sherwood capped off the night with an empty-netter with 1:29 remaining. That sent both teams into brawl, with Huntsville’s Mathieu Newcomb heading after Roanoke’s Pokorney and Josh Nenadal. Once that scrap was halted, Huntsville’s Tyler Piacentini attempted to incite a fight, and Nenadal ended up being blindsided by the Havoc’s Nolan Kaiser which led to a full-scale fight. Nenadal dropped Kaiser after a few right-hand blows, and things finally calmed down for a few moments. All five of those players received at least one game misconduct penalty. With less than 18 seconds left, Chris Vella sought out Huntsville’s Dom Procopio in front of the benches, and Procopio and Roanoke’s Brady Heppner both received game misconducts. At the time of this recap, Huntsville was handed 99 penalty minutes in the contest, while Roanoke was assessed 55 penalty minutes on the night.
The Dawgs are back at home next weekend against the Peoria Rivermen. Puck drop for both Friday and Saturday night is scheduled for 7:05 p.m. at Berglund Center. Season tickets, packages, group tickets, and single game tickets for home games are on sale now, and you can listen to the games on the Haley Toyota Rail Yard Dawgs Hockey Network via Mixlr or watch it on HockeyTV.