Pittsburgh Splits Home-and-Home with Lockport

The Pittsburgh Vengeance traveled to Western New York on Friday night to take on the Lockport Express. The Vengeance came out early with a flurry of shots but couldn't solve the Express goalie. Lockport jumped out to a 1-0 lead midway thru the first period and carried that advantage into the locker room after one period of play.
 
"Their goal was an epic breakdown in the defensive zone and a total lack of compete as a unit," said Coach Dorsey. The Express protected that 1-0 lead for the rest of the game and handed the Vengeance a crushing road defeat. Joel De Simone stopped 25 out of 26 in the net for the loss for Pittsburgh.

 

"We managed 7 shots in the third period and took multiple penalties. Those aren't the signs of a desperate hockey team. Our back check and line changes were brutal and nowhere near what you need to be a playoff caliber team," stated Coach Dorsey.
 

Pittsburgh would make the long trip home Friday night to host the Express in a Saturday evening rematch at the Alpha Ice Complex. Pittsburgh went ahead just twenty seconds into the game as Justin Smith notched his first career junior goal assisted by Dom Glavach and Gavin Cummings. Lockport drew even midway thru the opening frame to tie it at 1-1, and that would remain the score after one period of play. Chris Harvey banged home a goal on a nice feed from Perry Shiring and Thomas Polster to give the Vengeance a 2-1 lead. Cam Williams maintained his points lead with a goal to put Pittsburgh up 3-1 after two periods with assists going to Austin Martz and Dillon Joyce. The Vengeance continued to press and struck early in the third to go up 4-1 on a goal by Joyce with assists going to Williams and Martz. Lockport battled back with two quick goals and cut the deficit to 4-3 before Vincent Casale would score unassisted to make it 5-3 Pittsburgh. Nolan Puhala would score to make 6-3 with assists going to Cam Smith and Casale. Casale would add his second goal of the game and seal a 7-3 Vengeance victory with assists to James Unger and Justin Smith. Jacob Zab would get his first career start in net and stop 20 out of 23 shots for the victory. "We got to the net a lot better tonight but nowhere as sound defensively as we need to be," said Coach Dorsey after the game.

 
Pittsburgh hosts the Toledo Cherokee in a huge battle for second place in the East Division standings this upcoming weekend. Game times are 6:30 pm Saturday and 11:40 am on Sunday at Alpha Ice.