Series Preview: Prowlers, River Dragons Meet Again
For the second time in three weeks, the Port Huron Prowlers welcome the Columbus River Dragons to McMorran Place for a two-game series. Port Huron is riding a four-game win streak which began the last time the Dragons visited.
The Prowlers went down to Baton Rouge, Louisiana and Biloxi, Mississippi and came away with a three-game sweep of the Mississippi Sea Wolves. The first game was a neutral site contest in Baton Rouge in which Port Huron’s offense exploded in a 10-5 win. The goals kept coming the next night in a 9-6 victory after the series shifted to Biloxi. The series finale was much tighter. Both teams scored in the final minute of regulation and earned at least a point. Sam Marit scored the shootout winner in the ninth round while Danick Rodrigue stopped all nine shooters he faced. Rodrigue, Joe Noonan and Wyatt Hoflin each picked up a victory in net. Dalton Jay and Liam Freeborn had two three-point games apiece and both finished with eight in the series. The Prowlers sit third in the Continental Division at 11-7-3 with 35 points.
Columbus fought off the Elmira Mammoth and picked up a pair of dramatic home wins last week. The first game was a 5-3 win that came from a 3-1 deficit. It was 3-2 with under four minutes to go in regulation but goals from Austin Daae and Thomas Aldworth snatched victory from the jaws of defeat. Aldworth was the hero again the next night. He tied the game at two with less than three minutes left in the game and then scored the winner 18 seconds into overtime. Aldworth led the Dragons with five goals in two games with a hat trick in the first matchup. Cody Wickline had three assists on the weekend. Bailey MacBurnie and Breandan Colgan each picked up a victory. Columbus is still atop the FPHL at 16-2-1 with 47 points.
SEASON SERIES (RIVER DRAGONS 3-1)
Nov. 18 @ Columbus: River Dragons 5, Prowlers 2
Nov. 19 @ Columbus: River Dragons 5, Prowlers 3
Dec. 9 @ Port Huron: River Dragons 5, Prowlers 3
Dec. 10 @ Port Huron: Prowlers 7, River Dragons 3
Much like their first three matchups, Columbus jumped out to an early lead. It was 2-0 in the second until Jay scored to set off the teddy bear toss. A four-minute double-minor to MacBurnie and a five-minute major to Edgars Ozolinsh sent the Prowlers to a lengthy five-on-three to start the third. Port Huron took advantage with five power-play goals in the first 3:46 of the final frame to blow the game open and eventually win 7-3.
PLAYERS TO WATCH
Prowlers - Alex Johnson (D) - Johnson beat a goaltender for the first time this season with two goals in Baton Rouge. He added three assists over the next two nights in Biloxi, including his 100th in the FPHL.
River Dragons - Jacob Kelly (F) - Kelly had a hat trick in the first game of the series two weeks ago at McMorran. He has points in four of his last five games with eight points in that span.
The Prowlers scored a quarter of their 96 goals this season during their three-game series with Mississippi last week…Breandan Colgan and Bailey MacBurnie (CRD) are second and third in the FPHL with a .920 and .916 save percentage, respectively…Dalton Jay (PHP) leads his team in goals (18), assists (16) and points (34)…Columbus has given up 14 power-play goals this season, five of them came in the third period of the 12/10 game at Port Huron
Dec. 22, 7:05 P.M. at McMorran Place (Port Huron, MI)
Dec. 23, 7:05 P.M. at McMorran Place (Port Huron, MI)
Both games will be streamed live on the Port Huron Prowlers YouTube channel