Two Goals Hold Up For Rebels Vs. Titans

Jamestown’s Sam Anzai (12) takes a shot at New Jersey goaltender Brandon Perrone during Friday’s NAHL East Division game at Northwest Arena. P-J photo by Chad Ecklof

In a game marred by 15 penalties, the Jamestown Rebels were able to hold on to their two-goal second period lead for a 2-1 win over the New Jersey Titans in North American Hockey League action Friday night.

The Rebels entered Northwest Arena as the second-place East Division team, looking to extend their margin over the third-place Titans.

Following the victory, Joe Coombs and company improved to 25-11-3-3 while New Jersey is now 22-21, 12 points behind the Rebels heading into another 7:05 p.m. meeting tonight.

Despite an abundance of opportunities on the power play, Jamestown earned both of its goals at even strength.

With 10 minutes of play gone in the first period, Augustine Moore had a pair of back-to-back chances for the hosts as he let a screened wrist shot fly past his defender for a shot that was grabbed by netminder Brandon Perrone.

Jamestown’s Nick Stuckless attempts to score on a breakaway against New Jersey goaltender Brandon Perrone during Friday’s NAHL East Division game at Northwest Arena. P-J photo by Chad Ecklof

Moore followed that chance up with a chance on the short side, but Perrone got the better of that exchange, playing tight to his post.

On the ensuing possession, New Jersey had a good look to earn the first goal of the game as Cam Gendron was sprung on a breakaway with a lead pass from the back end, only to send that shot over the net as Ryan Keane came out of his crease to cut down the angle.

“It starts right away with penalty after penalty after penalty. They didn’t get a chance to get going, we didn’t get a chance to get going,” Coombs said. “When you are taking that many penalties you are in to your sixth, seventh, eighth penalty killer on your forward line just to keep them involved in the game and it’s not necessarily what you want but you don’t have a choice.”

Following that missed chance by the visitors, Nick Stuckless took passes from Nate Clark and Alex Roy into the zone, driving hard to the left side of Perrone before cutting inside past his defender.

Perrone was able to make the initial save, but in the confusion that followed the puck wound up crossing the goal line to give Stuckless his eighth goal of the year.

Early in the second period, Keane was able to keep New Jersey off the board once again as Jake LaRusso carved his way in tight for a shot that was kicked away.

That chance was followed by another breakaway for the visitors, with Kyler Head driving in all alone on Keane for snapshot that was turned away with a stick-side parry.

“He was certainly the difference tonight,” Coombs said of Keane. “Keaner has been solid all year. Last weekend I thought he played really well, he played both games for us. Ryan Keane gives any team he plays for a chance to win every game and that is all you can ever ask of your goaltender.”

The Rebels killed off a penalty following that breakaway save, with Keane kicking away a shot from Kyle Jeffers while Caleb Price was able to turn away a shot with a block for the Rebels.

With the clock showing 10:49, Jamestown was able to make it 2-0 as Jim Glynn struck a shot off the post that was lost for a moment before coming to a rest to the right side of Perrone. Alex Frye found himself all alone in front, shoveling that home with a quick finish for his team-leading 23rd tally.

New Jersey responded to that goal with a power-play tally by Gavin Gulash, his 17th of the year.

Despite only facing 16 shots on the night, Keane made his presence known once again with back-to-back stops on Kyle Jeffers on the penalty kill.

Not to be outdone with those stops, Perrone put on a show of his own late in the third period, flashing the glove on back-to-back stops in close against Noah Finstrom.