Anderson, Ruiz power Hat Tricks to 7-4 home win

by Casey Bryant

Photo by Dan Stockfield

History was made at Danbury Arena, as the Hat Tricks earned their first home victory in franchise history by topping the Elmira Enforcers 7-4.

Danbury leapt out to an early lead courtesy of Cory Anderson, rifling home a wrist shot from between the hashmarks just 88 seconds into play. Jonny Ruiz added a goal of his own on the powerplay to extend the lead to 2-0. Though the Enforcers would answer back, a netmouth scramble led to Vladyslav Gavrik's third goal of the season to give Danbury a 3-1 lead, chasing Enforcers netminder Troy Passingham after just 7:50 of time.

Anderson would strike again before period's end, as the Hat Tricks carried a 4-2 lead into the second period. 

A nifty passing play led to a Jordan Clarke goal for Elmira midway through the second, but Ruiz banged home a rebound minutes later for his second of the contest to keep the Hat Tricks' lead at two.

Kyle Stevens responded with a tally just 14 seconds after Ruiz's goal to bring the Enforcers once more within striking distance. With a powerplay opportunity in the final two minutes of the second period, Elmira coughed up the puck allowing a shorthanded three-on-one. A perfectly executed tic-tac-toe sequence was capped off by Phil Bronner to give the Hat Tricks a much-needed shot in the arm heading into the final frame.

Sam Williams would tack on one more in the third for Danbury, securing the 7-4 final. Dillon Kelley made 37 stops in the victory.

"It's always great to win at home," said head coach Billy McCreary after the game. "I liked the jump in our game, we have a few things that we want to tighten up, but for the most part we had great energy and did a good job supplying pressure up front."

"It's a big win for us," said forward Cory Anderson after the game. "We got a lot of chances. They're a good team over there. We wanted to get that first home win and give our fans something to cheer about."

The Hat Tricks will be back in action tomorrow night for a rematch with the Enforcers.