Knoxville, TN (SUBMITTED) -- The Knoxville Ice Bears faced the Augusta RiverHawks for the fourth time this season and a day after their devastating defeat in Augusta. Home-ice advantage didn’t help the Ice Bears, who lost in overtime, 3-2.
Martin Kubaliak and Nick Bydal wasted no time rekindling the tension from last night’s game in Augusta with a brawl in the beginning of the first period.
Chris Pontes kick started the game with the first goal, his first professional hockey goal, off a pass from Frank Furdero and Emery Olauson. Pontes was signed an Ice Bears contract this week after a three-game tryout.
The RiverHawks answered quickly in the second period with a goal by Chris Ferazzoli. SPHL point leader Neil Graham and Ed Snetsinger are credited with the assist.
Augusta took the lead in the last 4 minutes of the second period when Aaron McGill snuck one past rookie goalie Bryan Hince. Hince faced 33 shots in his first start on home ice.
Knoxville ended the second period trailing the RiverHawks 2-1.
With a sharp shot to the top of the goal, Jason Ford tied the game at 2 with the only goal of the third period, sending the game into the most exciting overtime in professional hockey - a 5 minute 3-on-3 overtime.
The Ice Bears had great opportunities and tight defense through the overtime play, Graham took advantage of an Ice Bears penalty and a crowded crease which pinballed past Hince to end the game, 3-2 Augusta.
Knoxville’s Hince played a solid game making some fierce stops against the RiverHawks offense, but received his first loss as an Ice Bears goalie.
The Ice Bears meet the Columbus Cottonmouths at home tomorrow night at 7:30 p.m.
Mercedes Benz Three Stars of the Game:
1st Star: Neil Graham (Augusta)
2nd Star: Ed Snetsinger (Augusta)
3rd Star: Jason Ford (Knoxville)
Courtesy: Ice Bears Sports Information
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