Feb 21, 2014 11:45 PM by IceGators Media Relations
Lafayette, La.--The Louisiana IceGators were hoping lightning would strike twice and that they would be able to pull off another comeback win against the Pensacola IceFlyers.
It was not meant to be.
Adam Pawlick and Corey Banfield both scored twice as the IceFlyers routed the IceGators 5-4 in the Cajundome.
The IceGators return to the Cajundome Saturday night to take on the Peoria Rivermen. Game time is 7:05 p.m.
"For first place on the line, our preparation and focus weren't there," said IceGators head coach Kevin Kaminski. "We tried to match them playing pond hockey, and they were too fast and too skilled for us to do that. It was turnover festival for us. We shot ourselves in the foot and give them most of their goals.
"We were all fluff and no substance. We probably played a good 20 to 25 minutes, and that's not going to cut it against a first-place team. We've been successful all year long against Pensacola. Why would we reinvent the wheel? Did we get complacent last weekend with that comeback win? Those only happen once in a while."
Pensacola's Corey Banfield scored the only goal of the first period at the 13:26 mark to give the IceFlyers a 1-0 lead going into the first intermission.
Adam Pawlick and Ryan Salvis scored back-to-back goals to open the second period, giving Pensacola a 3-0 lead with 13:35 remaining in the frame.
Kaminski then pulled goalie Matt Zenzola in favor of Kiefer Smiley. However, Kaminski says the move was not indicative of Zenzola's performance.
"I told Zenzola it was nothing against him because there was nothing he could do on two of those goals," Kaminski said. "I told him I needed to do something to get the guys to respond.
The IceGators did respond, as Matt Robertson scored on a power play at 12:06 to make the score 3-1.
Pensacola regained the three-goal lead after Banfield scored his second of the evening four minutes later.
Pawlick tacked on another goal 30 seconds into the third period to give Pensacola a 5-1 lead.
The IceGators made their run at a comeback late in the period.
Josh Duplantis recorded his first goal of the year with six minutes left in the game to make the score 5-2.
Jeff Grant cut the deficit to two with a goal of his own with just under three minutes to play.
Adam Stuart cut the Pensacola lead to a goal with 1:07 left in regulation.
Despite a flurry at the end of the game, the IceGators could not even the score.
Kaminski was quick to answer when asked what his team needs to do to rebound in its game against Peoria.
"We need to respond with 60 minutes tomorrow night and with a much better effort--a greasy, gritty effort."