Dashers Win Final Home Game of the Season

By Nate Williamson

Danville, IL - The Danville Dashers finished their last home game of the season on a high note by breaking a nine-game losing streak with a 3-2 win over the first place Carolina Thunderbirds. A crowd of nearly 1,600 came out for Jump Rope for Heart Night on Friday at the David S. Palmer Arena which had several special jersey giveaways and raffles. The Dashers never trailed in one of their most impressive wins on the season, and just their second win against Carolina in the season series. The victory allows Danville to head into their final game of the season on the road against the Thunderbirds tomorrow on a high note.

Jared Henderson netted on a slap shot at 7:21 of the first period after a Matt Kaludis stretch pass found Brian Dunford. Dunford slotted a pass in towards Henderson who beat Carolina goaltender Frankie McClendon stick-side.

Dominik Fejt was the next to find net on a power play at 4:50 into the second period when he fired past Kaludis in bar down fashion, leaving the Danville defense with no way to intervene. The game was tied 1-1 for just under 20 seconds when Fred Hein beat McClendon on a slap shot off assists from Liam Tully and Justin Brausen to retake the lead for the Dashers. Josh Pietrantonio would score just before the frame ended at 19:16 on a stretch-pass assist from Jiri Pestuka.

Veteran and former FHL Player of the Year Justin Brausen would have the last say in the matter, as he scored at 4:17 of the final period, beating McClendon and the Carolina defense to take the game to its final score of 3-2 in favor of the Dashers.

The 3 Stars of the Game went to Justin Brausen (1G, 1A), Jared Henderson (1G), and Fred Hein (1G).  

The victory was met with great applause from the faithful hometown fans, who were happy to take the win over the top-rated Thunderbirds, after sticking through a tough and turbulent year for the organization.

The two teams go head-to-head again tomorrow night in Carolina for the Dashers final game this season. Puck drop is at 6:05 PM EDT, and you can watch live on TFMSports.com.

Photo credit: LMB Studios