Pictured Above: Jesse Kessler visits a puppy during warm-ups on Pucks and Paws Night
Stewart’s Third Period Goal Lifts Wild to 3-2 Win
In their final meeting in the regular season, the Johnstown Tomahawks and Wenatchee Wild battled fiercely for 60 minutes. After several scrums and fights, the Wild were able to escape with a 3-2 win Saturday night in front of 3,725 fans and 84 dogs on Pucks and Paws Night at the Cambria County War Memorial Arena.
The two teams combined for 90 penalty minutes, 9 fighting majors, and three misconduct penalties.
Robert Nichols picked up the win, stopping 18 of 20 shots, while Colin Brennan took the loss, stopping 25 of 28 shots.
After a physical game Friday night, the teams were just as physical trading hard hits at each end. Jesse Kessler and Joe Sullivan were the first players to exchange punches as they made contact near center ice circle at 15:00 of the first period. After a save by Colin Brennan with 1:58 remaining in the first, both teams met behind the Johnstown net, leading to Cody Boyd defeating Noah Nelson, before receiving a fighting major and game ejection.
Neither team found the back of the net in the first period, but just 48 seconds into the second period, Wenatchee’s Max McHugh scored on a shot from in front of Brennan.
Johnstown (22-18-10) tied the game at 3:11 after Jordan Watt took a wide open pass from Mitch Hall and fired it past Nichols for his 16th goal of the season. Hall’s assist extended his point scoring streak to five games.
Near the halfway point of the period, Connor Wright and Nathan Flynn dropped the gloves sending both to the box for fighting.
Wenatchee (35-7-4) regained the lead on the Joe Sullivan goal at 16:34 of the second period, before Trevor Stewart went top shelf in the third period to make it 3-1.
Mitch Kontny fired a shot past the right side of Nichols at 4:35 to set the final at 3-2.
The Tomahawks continue their home stand with a weekend series against Fresno Feb. 22 and 23. Both games begin at 7 P.M.