River Dragons Move Up To 2nd Place After 4-1 Win Wednesday Night

Columbus, GA - The Columbus River Dragons defeated their southern rivals the Carolina Thunderbirds on Wednesday night, and in the process moved up to 2nd place in the FPHL standings.

The first period saw a shutout from both sides with Mike Cosentino stopping 12 shots and Chris Paulin stopping 15  to make for a scoreless opening frame. Both teams cam up empty on different power play opportunities they had earned, capping off a good defensive period from either side.

Joe Smith started the scoring in the second period with his first professional goal at the 3:32 mark assisted by Alex Storjohann giving Columbus a 1-0 lead. Josh Pietrantonio extended that lead about 90 seconds later with a laser of a slap shot assisted by Adam Vannelli and Austin Daae making the Columbus lead 2-0. 

Dawson Baker put Carolina on the board at the 10:02 mark of the second period after a defensive breakdown led to an odd-man rush the other way. The goal was assisted by Chase DiBari and Nathan Campbell, cutting the River Dragons lead to 2-1, which would hold to the intermission.

In the third, Austin Daae scored with a rebound goal in front of the net at the 1:48 mark of the third period after a sketchy clearance of the net front by Carolina, extending the lead to 3-1 in favor of the Dragons. Jake Grade and Mark Kompain got into a scrap at the 10:37 mark of the third period which resulted in the pair being handed down fighting penalties, Kompain had been given the initial call on the platy sending Columbus to the power play out of the encounter. 

Joe Smith concluded the scoring for the night with an empty net goal shot from the blue line making its way into the net at the 19:28 mark of the third period, making the final score 4-1.

Columbus now gets ready for the next five games on the road starting up this weekend in Delaware. Saturday and Sunday games at the Thunderdome with coverage on the River Dragon radio network.

Three Stars of the Game

Mike Cosentino
Joe Smith
Josh Pietrantonio