The Atlanta Capitals have moved into a tie for first place in the NA3HL South after wrapping up the home portion of their inaugural season in Georgia with a pair of shutout wins over Louisiana.
It’s been a long, rough season for the Louisiana Drillers. 6 of their 9 wins have come against the equally struggling Euless Jr. Stars, and they have only have 1 win all year against a winning team (a 2-1 home win over Texas in November). Playing with a roster three players short, the Drillers had their hands full with an Atlanta team battling for a division title. In fact, the Capitals had more shots on goal in the first period Friday night (21) than the Drillers managed over the entire weekend (19).
First period goals from Alex Johanson, Arturas Laukaitis, and Ross Bartlett set the tone on Friday as the Caps outshot Louisiana 21-4. More of the same in the second period, as Laukaitis scored again followed by Kyle Rimbach and Riley Hummitsch for a 6-0 lead and a 42-7 shot count. It may be fair to say Atlanta cruised through the final frame, outshooting the Drillers 13-2 and staying out of the back of the net. It was light duty for Aleksandr Zendejas, who collected his 21st win and fourth shutout.
Saturday night, the Capitals picked right back up, with Evan Camba and Jacob Roers starting the scoring in a first period that saw Atlanta outshoot their guests 22-3. Steve MacIver added a tally late in the second for a 3-0 lead. Dylan Wattles made it 4-0 in the third, but when a Driller player drew a 5 minute major for a check from behind that also earned a game ejection, the Capitals responded by scoring a pair of goals on that major power play (Camba’s second, and Alex Johanson), and then adding two more as Wattles buried his second and Camba completed the hat trick for an 8-0 win, holding the Drillers to just 2 third period shots. Corey Boettcher picked up his eleventh win and second shutout.
Atlanta (34-9-2) sits in a first place tie with Point Mallard, and will close out the regular season in Decatur, AL against the Ducks on March 12 and 13. The games will be available to view on FASTHockey.com.
* Disclaimer: This site may contain advice, opinions and statements from various authors and information providers. Views expressed in this article reflect the personal opinion of the author, Arch Ecker, and not necessarily the views of JuniorHockey.com. JuniorHockey.com does not represent or endorse the accuracy or reliability of any advice, opinion, statement or other info provided in the article, or from any other member of this site.