The Rebels used a balanced scoring attack to give them a 5 – 2 win over the visiting Johnstown Tomahawks last night. The victory gives the Rebels a perfect 6 – 0 record on the young season. They are the only undefeated team in the North American Hockey League.
Former Rebel Carter Dwyer helped his old team in the very beginning of the game when he took a slashing penalty at 4:41 into the opening period. The Rebels were having good puck movement on the powerplay but were unable to get any shots on net due to Johnstown’s defense. Then the puck went back to Diarmad DiMurro at the near side point. As he started to walk the blueline to his right he passed the puck back to Jensen Zerban, who promptly passed it downlow to Aaron Maguyon at the bottom of the faceoff circle. Maguyon found a wide open DiMurro at the top of the slot and he took a wrist shot that beat Tomahawks’ goalie Vinnie Purpurra blocker side to give the Rebels a 1 – 0 lead at 5:43 into the opening period.
A little over four minutes later Adam Peck would give the Rebels a 2 – 0. After Rebels goalie Eli Billing made a nice back-door pass save to keep the Tomahawks off the board, the rebound came out to Julian Makary who skated up the far side boards. Makary sent a cross-ice pass to a streaking Jimmy Glynn along the near side boards. As Glynn skated to the faceoff dot he passed the puck to Makary in the slot. Makary took a shot the was saved by Purpurra but Peck picked up the loose puck and put it behind Purpurra for his first goal of the season.
Despite being outshot 12 – 7 after one period of play, the Rebels entered the second period with a two-goal lead. After a battle in the corner the puck skirted out to Carter Woolley who promptly passed it back to Justin Smith as the far side point. Smith crossed the puck over to DiMurro who took a shot that blocked in front of the net. Mack Byers picked up the rebound and passed the puck back to the slot to a breaking Smith who took a snapshot that beat Purpurra long side to give the Rebels a 3 – 0 lead at 6:33 into the middle period. It was Smith’s first-ever NAHL goal.
Jonathan Bendorf would make it a 4 – 0 game with 9:23 left in the second. Zerban would bring the puck up along the far side boards and cut across to center ice as he entered the offensive zone. He took a shot that was saved by Purpurra but Bendorf tapped in the rebound for his first goal as a Rebel.
Johnstown’s Chase Davidson was called for holding with 5:19 left in the second. Thirty-four seconds later Woolley would make it a 5 – 0 game. With Johnstown looking to clear the puck it was blocked by Peck and the puck went to Auggie Moore along the far side boards. Moore passed the puck back to DiMurro at the point. DiMurro started to move closer into the offensive zone where he saw an open Woolley at the top of the near side faceoff circle. Woolley stepped up and took a snipe of a shot that beat Johnstown’s Jake Faulkner short side for the Rebels second power play goal of the game.
The Tomahawks would make it 5 – 1 just 34 seconds later, and they added their second goal with three minutes remaining to finish the game’s scoring.
Billing would stop 25 of 27 shots while Purpurra and Faulkner would combine to stop 21 of 26 shots. Click here for the box score.
The Rebels will be home this upcoming weekend playing a total of three games, two against the Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Knights and one against the New Jersey Titans.