Series Preview: Prowlers Renew Rivalry with Carolina
The Port Huron Prowlers travel south for the third time in four weeks. This time, they’ll visit Winston-Salem, North Carolina for a pair of games with the Carolina Thunderbirds.
The Prowlers are coming off of a series split with the Binghamton Black Bears at McMorran Place. The teams traded 5-3 games on Nov. 25 and Nov. 26. Dalton Jay scored twice in the first game, a loss for Port Huron. His second of the night was the 200th goal of his FPHL career. The second game featured two second-period goals in 18 seconds from the Prowlers’ Tucker Scantlebury and Vincent Dekumbis. Dekumbis’ tally was his first in the FPHL. These came just two minutes after Binghamton scored twice in 20 seconds to open up a 3-1 lead. Port Huron dominated the third period, outshooting the Black Bears 17-3, and scored twice to secure the 5-3 win. Jay finished with three goals on the weekend while Scantlebury, Dekumbis and Sam Marit added three points apiece. Wyatt Hoflin started both games and made 50 saves. The Prowlers sit fourth in the Continental Division at 6-6-2 with 20 points.
Carolina visited two Empire Division opponents and fell in both contests. The Watertown Wolves took their Nov. 25 matchup 5-4 in a shootout. The Thunderbirds held a late lead, but Trevor Lord tied the game for the Wolves with under six minutes to play in the third. The shootout featured a fight between Dawson Baker and Watertown goaltender Greg Hussey moments before Fabian Lehner ended it in the fourth round. The next night, the Thunderbirds traveled to Danbury to take on the Empire-leading Hat Tricks. Danbury built a 5-1 lead in the second period and held on for a 5-3 win. Gus Ford was held without a point for the first time this season and fell out of the top spot in the FPHL’s points leaderboard. Petr Panacek was the only Thunderbird with a point in each game. He finished the road trip with a goal and an assist. Mario Cavaliere took the shootout loss in Watertown while Boris Babik manned the crease in Danbury. Carolina sits third in the Continental at 8-3-1 with 22 points.
SEASON SERIES (TIED 1-1)
Oct. 21 @ Port Huron: Prowlers 4, Thunderbirds 3
Oct. 22 @ Port Huron: Thunderbirds 5, Prowlers 4 (OT)
The finale of these teams’ first series was a back-and-forth affair that ended in a 5-4 overtime victory for Carolina. Lucas Rowe’s second goal of the game was the winner in extra time. Baker had a game-high five points on a goal and four assists. Cavaliere got the win with 33 saves in his second start in as many nights while Danick Rodrigue made 27 stops in his second straight start. The victory was Carolina’s first of the season in their second game.
PLAYERS TO WATCH
Prowlers: Vincent Dekumbis (F) - Dekumbis made his FPHL debut when these teams faced each other in October. With more confidence and his first goal under his belt, he’ll have a chance to do some damage.
Thunderbirds: Joe Kennedy (D) - Kennedy returned from his SPHL loan the same day Carolina traded defenseman Nathan Campbell to Elmira. He’s been known to jump up into the play in the offensive zone.
Dalton Jay’s (PHP) 201 career goals are two shy of Justin Brausen for third in league history…The Thunderbirds are the only FPHL team with both 0 short-handed goals AND 0 short-handed goals against…As they were last week, the Prowlers are still the only FPHL team with the same number of goals for and goals against (50)…Carolina has three players (Ford, Rowe and John Buttitta) in the top six on the FPHL’s points leaderboard. No other team has more than one.
Dec. 2, 7:35 P.M. at Winston-Salem Fairgrounds Annex (Winston-Salem, NC)
Dec. 3, 6:05 P.M. at Winston-Salem Fairgrounds Annex (Winston-Salem, NC)
Both games will be streamed live on the Port Huron Prowlers YouTube channel