COLUMBUS, Ga. — For the fifth straight season, the Louisiana IceGators are heading to the playoffs.
The IceGators clinched that berth thanks to a dominant performance over the Columbus Cottonmouths. The IceGators scored three straight goals in the first and second periods en route to a 5-3 win over Cottonmouths. Jake Hauswirth and Massimo Lamacchia each contributed a goal and an assist.
Columbus took a 1-0 lead when Chad Bennett scored a power-play goal 2:11 into the game. The IceGators woke up shortly thereafter.
Tyler Pendergrast scored off a Blake Hietala feed at the 4:10 mark of the first period to tie it. John Daniels tacked on another goal at the 8:54 mark to put Louisiana ahead 2-1. Matt Robertson, in his first game back with the IceGators after signing with the team nearly a week ago, gave them a 3-1 lead with a power-play goal 2:16 into the second period.
Kyle Shapiro cut the Cottonmouths’ deficit to a goal by scoring a short-handed tally with 3:07 left in the middle period. The IceGators struck back 40 seconds later when Lamacchio recorded his second goal of the year on a power play.
Shapiro struck again with a power-play goal 61 seconds into the final period to cut the IceGators’ lead to 4-3. Hauswirth iced the win when he scored off a Mike Kavanagh assist with 10:13 left.
The IceGators close the regular season with a three-game homestand next week. The first game, between the IceGators and the Mississippi RiverKings, is 7:05 p.m. Thursday.