KNOXVILLE (KnoxvilleIceBears.com) -- What started as a fight for the title of points leader turned into an all-out brawl that ended in the Knoxville Ice Bears' last regular season game with less than 10 minutes left on the clock due to the Fayetteville FireAntz not having enough players to continue. Knoxville defeated Fayetteville, 9-4.
Tim Vitek, coming off a 4-goal game last night, scored Knoxville’s first goal with help from Kevin Swider. Less than two minutes later, Frank Furdero made it two for Knoxville, with assist from Kyle Bochek and Taylor Hustead. Fayetteville answered back to end the first period tied at two.
The second period began innocently enough, with a goal from Knoxville’s Mark Van Vliet at 4:08 and Fayetteville’s Rob Sich at 10:03. Knoxville scored two more goals, one from Bobby Joe Pelkey and the second of the night from Van Vliet. The period didn’t end soon enough to calm tensions between the two heated rivals, as a bench-clearing brawl send helmets and sticks sprawling across the ice. Twenty players from both teams received a total of 32 penalties, leaving the crowd dazed and confused.
Knoxville dominated the third period with four goals. After Fayetteville received two additional game misconducts and two less players on the ice, the officials suspended the game.
Knoxville’s Kevin Swider ended the game with two goals and three assists, bringing his season points total 102 points. Swider has led the league in points every year since its inception.
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