Peter Kacer netted five goals as the Georgia Ice Dogs dismantled the Tennessee Volunteers 8-2 on Friday night at the IceForum in Duluth, GA after returning home following a three game road trip. Georgia special teams shined as the Dawgs tallied two power play goals and two short handed goals and turned away 6 of 7 Tennessee power play chances. The win improved the Dogs record to to 3-1-0 and second place in the SECHC east division, 4-6-1 overall.
Cam Navis got the Dogs on the board at 12:33 in the first period as the Ice Dogs capitalized on their first of ten power play opportunities and did not look back. Two minutes later Peter Kacer scored his first of five goals on a short-handed breakaway. Kyle Blankenship scored on Georgia’s next power play opportunity with 7:50 remaining in the opening period on a feed from Rick Fiorillo third goal in the first period.
The Dogs took a 3-0 lead into the second period and would never trail in the game. Kacer scored just 30 seconds in the period putting Georgia up 4-0. Ice Dogs goaltender Vince DiCarlo kept the Vols off the board until the 5:57 mark of the second period when Brian Schroder scored on the power play for Tennessee. Just 13 seconds later Georgia regained their 4 goal lead when Kacer deposited a backhand shot into the upper right corner of the UT goal.
With a four goal deficit Tennessee frustrations grew late in the second period and it was visible in their play on the ice. With just over two minutes remaining in the period Tennessee’s Kris Debenedicts charged and checked Georgia netminder DiCarlo as he played a loose puck deep in the UGA zone. Debenedicts was ejected from the game for the malicious hit, but not before DiCarlo skated after him to repay the favor.
Both teams wound up with 4 players in their respective penalty boxes once order was restored. The Vols accrued 17 minutes in penalties in the second period alone. Georgia’s Ryan Terrana received a tem-minute misconduct for taunting the Vols fans in the stands following the incident.
The Dogs scored another short-handed goal when Navis tallied his second of the night putting Georgia up 6-1. Tennessee cut the lead to 6-2 when their leading scorer Jeong Choe beat a screened DiCarlo for his only goal of the game.
The third period consisted of DiCarlo keeping the Vols off the scoreboard with a variety of pad and glove saves. Kacer’s goal three minutes into the third period deflated the Vols for much the third period, and the Dawgs penalty kill was able to turn away three Tennessee power plays in the final period as the Atlanta based officiating crew once again displayed favor to a trailing visiting team.
Kacer added his 5th goal with 6:20 left in the game placing an exclamation point on the win with a final score of 8-2. DiCarlo stopped 27 of 29 shots faced in one of his best performances of the season.
Fresh off their SEC conference victory, the Ice Dogs travel to Columbus, GA on November 18 and 19 to take on archrival Georgia Tech on Friday night and Auburn on Saturday night.