River Dragons Grab All 3 Points Thursday Night On Late Stubbs Goal

Columbus, GA - The River Dragons took advantage of a late power play opportunity to take all three points on Thursday night, defeating the Port Huron Prowlers 5-4.

Columbus fired first and quickly doubled their lead early in the game. 7:15 into the game Austin Daae scored his first of the season tapping in on a 2-on-1 set up beautifully Mac Jansen. Before the goal announcement could be read to the crowd in full, the River Dragons doubled their lead as Jake Schultz found some space on the left wing side and buried one past Blake Scott to make it 2-0.

The Prowlers clawed one back shortly after the quick goals when Bryan Parsons was left all alone in front of Jared Rutledge 1:10 after the Schultz goal. The Prowlers would then even the game up as Joseph Deveny outwaited Jared Rutledge late in the first period and found some space in the slot to tuck one home and make it a 2-2 game heading into the locker room.

The River Dragons took a lead early in the second after a carryover power play afforded Columbus the man advantage and with five seconds left in the 5-on-4, CJ Stubbs fired a backdoor pass home off the post and gave Columbus back the lead. Port Huron would get back in the game 1:39 later as an Alex Johnson shot from the point was deflected past Jared Rutledge thanks to a Justin Portillo tip in. 

Columbus would take a lead into the locker room as Mac Jansen ripped one past Scott for his third point of the night at the 13:37 mark of the middle frame.

Heading into the third period with a 4-3 Columbus lead, the two teams traded chances throughout the first 15 minutes but no goals were found. Then seemingly out of nowhere a David Nippard pass to the middle took a fortuitous bounce past Rutledge and in to tie the game 4-4 with less than five minutes to go.

A late penalty assessed to Joe Pace gave Columbus a power play opportunity and they cashed in very late with CJ Stubbs tipping home his 2nd goal of the game off of a Nate O'Brien shot.

Down 5-4 with the goaltender pulled, the Prowlers came very close to tying the game with a little over a minute to go as an Austin Fetterly pass to the middle was stopped by Rutledge and then a mad scramble ensued in the crease, but somehow the puck stayed out. Columbus would hold on to the lead the rest of the way and take all 3 points on the night.

Jared Rutledge picks up his 6th win of the season stopping 22 of 26 shots in the game. Blake Scott takes the loss, making 33 saves on 38 shots.

The same two teams go at it again tomorrow night with the River Dragons wearing specialty Autism Awareness jerseys in honor of World Autism Awareness Day. Jerseys are already up for bid on LiveSource. Tickets available at the Civic Center Box Office or on TicketMaster.

Three Stars of the Game

CJ Stubbs
Mac Jansen
Austin Daae