Blood boils over in 8-3 battering to Enforcers

by Casey Bryant

Photo by Dan Stockfield

A physical weekend turned ugly for the Danbury Hat Tricks, as a flurry of goals in the second period sank the black-and-orange with an 8-3 final.

Elmira captured an early lead with a powerplay goal scored by Andrew Harrison. A Matyas Kasek major penalty gave the Enforcers plenty of momentum, which they carried into the second period.

Ahmed Mahfouz potted yet another goal in his illustrious career, burying a powerplay goal 7:44 into the second. Casper Dyrssen would answer back in turn with a powerplay goal of his own seconds into a double-minor penalty. With two minutes of powerplay time remaining and the tying score tantalizingly out of reach, the Hat Tricks began to apply intense pressure on Enforcers netminder Troy Passingham.

That intensity led to a scrum after the whistle between Mahfouz and Phil Bronner. While the officials were busy pulling the two apart, Enforcers forward Kyle Stevens and Hat Tricks player/coach Nicola Levesque squared off at center ice. Levesque dropped Stevens after a lengthy bout, firing up the Danbury Arena crowd.

Despite the shot in the arm of momentum, Elmira quickly took the wind out of Danbury's sails. Dustin Skinner netted a goal into an empty cage when goaltender Tom McGuckin dove out to the hashmarks on a partial breakaway. Eleven seconds later, Andrew Harrison poked a slow trickling puck through McGuckin's five-hole. Then, just fifteen seconds after, Harrison banged home a pop-up rebound, chasing McGuckin from the contest.

Elmira would cruise to an easy 8-3 final score.

"We've got to be more disciplined," Levesque said after the game. "I was trying to help my team out [with the fight], obviously it didn't work out the way we wanted. We've got to turn the page and get the next one."

Danbury will be on home ice next weekend against the Battle Creek Rumble Bees.