Game Recap: Hat Tricks Rally Late in Wytheville, Win 2-1 in OT

by Jordan Simmons & Doug Lattuca

WYTHEVILLE, VA — Josh Labelle’s power play blast from the point just 32 seconds into overtime capped off a late 2-1 comeback victory for the Hat Tricks over the Bobcats in the inaugural matchup between the two sides. 

With the win, Danbury has victories in four straight and in eleven of the last 14. Additionally, the Hat Tricks are just five points behind Motor City for second-place in the division and home ice advantage in round one of the playoffs.

With 13:08 remaining in the first period, Bobcats forward Vladislav Vlasov released a seeing-eye wrister through traffic and into the back of the net to give Blue Ridge an early 1-0 lead. Despite being down at the end of one, the Hat Tricks led the game in shots, 12-8.    

Both goalies were flawless in the second frame, stopping 25 combined shots, and for most of the third, the offenses were silent. But the Hat Tricks found some juice late and mounted a comeback.

With four minutes remaining in regulation, forward Johnny Ruiz found a loose puck in front and roofed it under the bar for the game-tying goal on the power play. The Hat Tricks captain has recorded a point in six straight games, tallying nine during that span (4g, 5a). 

It did not take long for the Hat Tricks to strike in the extra period. Following a holding penalty 22 seconds into OT, Labelle unloaded a rocket from the blue line past Blue Ridge goaltender Owen Liskiewicz to take game one of the weekend set. 

Hat Tricks netminder Talor Joseph stopped 35 of 36 shots in his second start with the team, while Bobcats goaltender Liskiewicz allowed two goals on 28 shots. 

The Hat Tricks return to action Saturday for the second game of the two-game series in Wytheville. The puck drops at 7 p.m.

The Hat Tricks are in a playoff push and we want you to be a part of it! Playoff ticket packages are on sale now! Call Herm Sorcher at (973) 713-7547 to secure yours today or press here to learn more. To buy single-game regular season tickets press here. Don't miss the excitement of the playoffs—secure your tickets today and join us in supporting the Danbury Hat Tricks!

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