GLENS FALLS, NY – The Adirondack Thunder have started their season in exciting fashion, beginning with an action-packed opening night, and now two come-from-behind overtime sessions. The Thunder played rival Manchester Monarchs Friday and the Reading Royals Saturday. Both games featured seemingly insurmountable deficits that the Thunder were able to overcome.
The Monarchs opened the scoring less than five minutes into Friday’s game when Zac Lynch scored on the power play. Colton Saucerman took the initial shot from the blue line, and with a flurry in front of the net, Lynch was able to tap in the rebound. The score would remain the same until the 17:02 mark when Eric Neiley battled to get the puck to James Henry, who batted it home to tie the game at 1-1. Just over a minute later, J.C. Campagna skated coast-to-coast to put the puck past Manchester goaltender Evan Cowley, giving the Thunder a 2-1 lead heading into the second period.
Manchester dominated in the second period, with four goals within a span of 11:23. The first came at 4:22, when Craig Wyszomirski took a shot that found its way through traffic and past Adirondack goaltender Nick Riopel. Just over three minutes later, Matt Marcinew scored on a rebound from a Saucerman shot. At 13:55, Cory Ward scored off a behind-the-net feed from Matt Schmalz. Riopel got held up on the other side of the net and dove to make a save, but wasn’t successful. Less than two minutes later, it was Rob Hamilton‘s turn to light the lamp. His shot from the point went past Riopel to put the Monarchs up 5-2. The Thunder saw a glimmer of hope when they were awarded a penalty shot at 16:49 of that period, but Brian Ward was denied, and the score remained 5-2. Adirondack’s Henry scored his second of the game with 2:32 remaining in the period to give the Thunder some hope heading into the third.
The Thunder continued their comeback effort with a Dylan Olsen goal from the blue line at 16:30 of the third. 1:32 later, Adirondack tied it up after Pierre-Luc Mercier threw the puck at the net and hit bodies in front. Desmond Bergin would get the goal. The score was 5-5 heading into overtime.
Neither team was able to capitalize during the five-minute overtime session, so a shootout was needed to decide the outcome. Adirondack’s Campagna was the only shooter to score, earning the rookie forward first star honors, and the Thunder won the exciting come-from-behind win 6-5.
Saturday’s game featured a four-goal deficit, with two quick goals for Reading. At the 1:19 mark of the first period, Chris McCarthy scored off a pass from Adam Schmidt. Only 14 seconds later, Alex Krushelnyski‘s unassisted tally gave Reading the early 2-0 lead. Those were the first two shots of the game for either team. The Thunder settled down and held the Royals to a two-goal lead until the final minute of the period when Matt Willows scored to put the Royals up 3-0 heading into the second period.
Former Adirondack Phantom Tyler Brown gave Reading a seemingly insurmountable 4-0 lead at 1:41 of the second period, scoring on another former Phantom, Adirondack’s goaltender Riopel. The Thunder would begin their comeback attempt less than four minutes later, when rookie forward Tim Harrison netted his first pro goal, with an assist going to Ryan Segalla, who spent training camp with the Royals. At 12:33 of the same period, Adirondack’s Neiley cut the deficit in half. Just over three minutes later, Ty Loney continued the comeback with a goal of his own. Reading led 4-3 heading into the third.
The score would remain the same until 10:55 into the third period. With Reading’s Nick Luukko off for a delay-of-game call, Loney and Olsen set up Campagna to tie things up for Adirondack. Neither team scored for the remainder of regulation, and the Thunder were headed to overtime for the second night in a row. It only took seven seconds for Derek Whitmore to score in the extra session. The Thunder would still receive a point for the overtime loss, and were able to temporarily move into a first-place tie with Manchester.
The Adirondack Thunder are currently tied for second place in the North Division, with their next game coming Tuesday, October 24, against the winless Greenville Swamp Rabbits.