Everything the Thunderbolts touched turned to goals on Wednesday night at Ford Center, as they matched a franchise record by scoring 10 goals in a 10-2 victory over the Vermilion County Bobcats. The Thunderbolts’ next home game will be on Tuesday, February 22nd at 10:00 am CST as they host the Vermilion County Bobcats. For tickets, call (812)422-BOLT (2658), buy online at EvansvilleThunderbolts.com or buy tickets in person at the Ford Center Box Office.
The scoring started early, beginning with Coy Prevost firing a shot past Bobcat goaltender Chase Perry on a 2-on-0 rush from Brett Radford and Austin Plevy to give Evansville the 1-0 lead at 3:07 of the first period. Following up was Radford, scoring a power-play goal on a net-front scramble from Plevy and Cameron Cook at 8:26 to make it 2-0 Evansville. At 16:27, Austin Plevy found himself on a shorthanded breakaway, scoring to make it 3-0 with an assist to Brandon Lubin.
In the second period, the Bobcats started hot, outshooting Evansville 9-1 to start. The Bobcats finally got on the board at 5:43, as Josh Koepplinger found the back of the net to cut Evansville’s lead to 3-1. The Thunderbolts settled things down, built the momentum back on their side, and were rewarded with two quick goals only 52 seconds apart to re-extend the lead to 5-1. The first goal, scored at 10:01, was scored by Zane Jones on a loose puck in front of the net, assisted by Mike Ferraro and Timothy Faulkner. Tate Leeson picked up the following goal unassisted at 10:53, as a Bobcat defender tried clearing a puck away from the net, and inadvertently hit the leg of Leeson, deflecting the puck into the open net. It was the end of the night for Perry in the net, and Ben Churchfield took the reins for the Bobcats in goal from this point. Koepplinger was able to score his second goal of the night for Vermilion County at 13:08, again shortening Evansville’s lead to 5-2. Evansville struck last in the period, as Ferraro scored on the power play from Tanner Butler and Cook to make it 6-2 at 16:03.
The Thunderbolts started the third period hot, scoring only 30 seconds in as Plevy finished a net-front deflection from Prevost and Charles Barber to make it 7-2. Less than two minutes later, Tyson Kirkby followed up a missed scoring chance by letting a shot go from the blue line that fooled Churchfield to make it 8-2, assisted by Ferraro and Faulkner at 2:08. Barely two minutes later, Ferraro scored once again on a rush up the near side, assisted by Faulkner at 4:10. Finally, Kirkby finished the scoring on a similar rush to the net, assisted by Ferraro and Jones to make it 10-2 at 17:33.
Ferraro led the way with two goals and three assists, while Plevy scored two goals and two assists. Kirkby finished with two goals, while Prevost, Jones, and Radford all scored a goal and assist each other, and Leeson had one goal. Faulkner tallied three assists, with Cook tallying two assists. Brian Billett finished with 20 saves on 22 shots for his 16th win of the season. The ten-goal output ties a franchise record for the most goals scored by the Thunderbolts in a single game, the other instance being a 10-3 win over the Macon Mayhem on 12/6/19 at Ford Center. The Thunderbolts and Bobcats next meet on Tuesday, February 22nd at Ford Center.
The Thunderbolts are currently competing in their fifth season in the SPHL (Southern Professional Hockey League). Season tickets are less than $9 per game. To order your tickets for this season, call 812-422-BOLT(2658).