The second half of Lockport’s home and home series with the Pittsburgh Vengeance did not turn out quite as well as the game Friday night. Pittsburgh welcomed the Express to the Alpha Ice Complex with a 7-3 victory over the visitors.
The game began with the same high energy seen in Friday evening’s contest. Pittsburgh came out with a strong presence and lots of speed. Justin Smith scored only 20 seconds into the first period to set the tone for Pittsburgh. Domenic Senese drew the teams even on a goal at 8:01, assisted by Pavel Kovtunov. The teams went into the first intermission tied 1-1, but with Pittsburgh outshooting Lockport 20-6.
Pittsburgh continued their offensive pressure in the second period and were rewarded with two goals. Chris Harvey scored at 4:14, with Cam Williams bumping the lead to 3-1 with his own marker at 6:06. Pittsburgh added 13 more shots to their game total and held Lockport to 6 shots for the period.
The Vengeance added to their lead when Dillon Joyce found the back of the next 1:49 into the third. The Express started to mount a comeback with two quick goals to draw them within a goal. Ryan Metzler got the first one at 4:39, assisted by Domenic Senese. Luca Mazzo made it 4-3 a mere 56 seconds later. Blake Bennett and Nick Grupp were credited with the assists.
Vincent Casale nipped the comeback in the bud 21 seconds after Mazzo’s goal. Pittsburgh scored another pair of goals to close out the scoring in the third period. Nolan Puhala notched his tally at 10:37. Casale scored his second of the night at 14:24 to make it 7-3 for Pittsburgh. Pittsburgh outshot Lockport in the third period 16-11.
Lockport’s Sam Fitzpatrick made 42 saves on the night. Jacob Zab stopped 20 of 23. Saturday’s game was much more disciplined than Friday’s game. The Express had 6 minutes in penalty time to Pittsburgh’s 10 minutes.
Lockport will next play the Roc City Royals on Friday evening at the Lakeshore Hockey Arena at 8:30pm. The next home game for the Express will be against the same Roc City Royals at the Cornerstone Ice Arena on Friday, February 17th, at 8pm. Lockport currently trails Roc City for the final playoff spot by 5 points with two games in hand on. The Royals fell to the Binghamton Junior Senators 9-2 Saturday, and will play them again Sunday afternoon.
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