The Enforcers claimed victory in their very first playoff game in team history and would need to find a way to do so on home ice again in order to advance to the championship round. The defending champions the Watertown Wolves had been no easy task the night before and would certainly not be one on the second night of the playoffs.
The first period saw an energized Enforcers group come out and jump on the lead in shots on goal with a 13- 12 advantage after one period. Over the course of the first the Enforcers scored the first goal of the game as Brandon Vuic fired one that went off Jared Rutledge’s shoulder hit the glass behind him bounced back and off Rutledge’s back into the net to give the Enforcers the first lead of the game. It would be a short lived lead however as a tipped puck by Deric Beaudreau beat Troy Passingham, but Elmira kept pressing and with 18:17 having ticked by Ahmed Mahfouz scored his first of the playoff and made it count with a backhand shot off a perfect pass from Stepan Timofeyev to give the Enforcers back the lead 2-1 at the end of one.
Elmira put their foot on the gas in the second period. Just 2:53 into it the Elmira college alum Mitch Atkins scored his second of the postseason to increase the Enforcers lead sneaking one by Rutledge. Then 17:37 into the period Gavin Yates and TImofeyev came in on a breakaway and with a sneaky pass Timofeyev gave Yates his first of the playoffs with a poke check by Rutledge. The Enforcers weren’t able to maintain the shots on goal advantage as they killed four penalties giving up the advantage 26-21.
The third period started off well for the Enforcers with Sean Reynolds scoring just 1:43 into the frame, which would end up being the winning tally, however Watertown did not go down without a fight as Tyler Gjurich scored two power play goals broken up by a Beaudreau even strength goal to close the gap to just a single goal. With the netminder pulled to try to extend their season the Wolves gave up two empty net goals to Stepan Timofeyev to close out the game and the series.
Troy Passingham stopped 36 of 40 for the victory.
The Enforcers will next play for the Comissioners Cup with dates to be disclosed very soon! Stay tuned to our website for more details!