ELMIRA RIVER SHARKS at BINGHAMTON BLACK BEARS
Black Bears Secure 1st Victory of the Season over Elmira
by Brooks Hill
Binghamton, NY - The Binghamton Black Bears defeated the Elmira River Sharks in the first game of the FPHL season. Connor Smith tallied four points, two goals and two assists earning the first star on opening night.
Two different squads from a season ago, Elmira and Binghamton battled for the first goal until Connor Smith broke the ice at the 13:44 mark. A high wrist-shot bet the goaltender and erupted the arena with the first goal of the season. Smith’s college linemate, Brenden Stanko, would goon to add the second goal of the period just a few minutes later. Binghamton skated into the locker room with a 2-0 advantage after one period.
Period two saw both teams light the lamp, as the ‘Sharks and Black Bears combined for five goals between the two sides. Kona Jackson was able to cut the lead to one, but a quick response from Smith gave Binghamton their two-goal cushion back. Austin Thompson scored his first of the season, followed by Dustin Jesseau following suit. Binghamton’s lead grew to 5- 1, but Jackson responded with his second the game before the final horn of the period. Binghamton was still leading 5-2 after 40 minutes.
Brandon Lucchesi grabbed the first goal seven minutes into the final period. Again, the Black Bears had a response adding another goal 30 seconds later. Thomas Wray scored his first professional goal and Tyson Kirkby tallied his first goal as captain to complete the night. Binghamton defeats Elmira 7-3.
River Sharks Fall to Binghamton, 7-3
by Jon Kliment
Binghamton, NY - The River Sharks opened up their season on the road against the Binghamton Black Bears at the Visions Veterans Memorial Arena on Saturday night. With this being the first of 13 matchups this season both teams were expect to come out hungry.
However it was an onslaught from the home team and saw a number of huge saves, but the Black Bears were able to hit the scoreboard first as Connor Smith broke into the zone on the near side and rocketed one over the glove side of netminder Spencer Kozlowski to give Binghamton the 1-0 lead. After successfully killing another penalty the River Sharks looked to rush up the ice, but Binghamton was able to keep control in the zone and work the puck to Brenden Stanko to give the Black Bears a 2-0 lead after one period.
The River Sharks came out for the second and aimed to battle back. The first goal in history came of a set faceoff play as Kona Jackson received a face-off back and fired it past Nolan Egbert for the first goal to cut the lead to 2-1. Binghamton didn’t back off however scoring the next three as Smith got his second, Austin Thompson, and Dustin Jesseau both added their first of the season. The River Sharks came up with one more before the period concluded though as Jackson netted his second of the evening on a pass from Ricards Jelenskis to make it 5-2.
Elmira came out hungry in the third, but couldn’t find the back of the net until 13:52 of the final frame when Lucchesi fired a rebound into an open cage cutting the deficit to 5-3. Binghamton responded again just 24 seconds later as Thomas Wray made it 6-3 and a late Tyson Kirkby goal finished off the season opener 7-3.
Kozlowski stopped 54 of 61 in the loss.
The River Sharks open up their home schedule Saturday October 21st at 6:07pm.