The NC State club hockey team took on UNC-Chapel Hill Monday at PNC Arena for the annual Backyard Brawl with the Pack, defeating the Tar Heels by a score of 9-5. With the win, the Pack improved to 9-0-0 overall and 6-0-0 in the ACCHL.
The game got off to a quick start as both teams combined for five goals in the first eight minutes of the game. The Tar Heels scored just 1:23 into the game with a quick wrist shot that beat NC State senior goaltender Joey Hall for an early 1-0 lead.
It took only a minute and 26 seconds for the Tar Heels to add to their 1-0 lead with a goal from forward Ricky Chen, making it a 2-0 lead. However, the Pack responded with a wrist shot from senior forward and captain Sam Banasiewicz with only 5:05 gone in the first period.
The Tar Heels would score another goal to make it 3-1, but sophomore Nikita Anistratov received a pass from Banasiewicz in the middle of the attacking zone for a goal to get the Pack within one goal.
Banasiewicz had a great chance with eight seconds left in the period, but he was unable to capitalize; the Pack went into the intermission down one goal.
The second period was overall a brawl between both teams, with about four fights taking place and three goals for the IcePack.
The period started with Devin Halko being called for cross-checking, a five on three for UNC and then a couple of minutes later, a huge skirmish took place after the blown whistle, which involved multiple players, and both UNC and NC State assessed penalties which were two minutes apiece at the 4:01 mark.
Only 15 seconds later yet another fight took place after the whistle involving three players on each team. The only initial penalty assessed was to a UNC player for slashing.
Alex Robinson had a great move on a UNC defender and dropped a pass back to Riley Johnson for the top-shelf on a power play to tie the game up at three goals apiece.
The Pack then scored off of the faceoff off a backhanded shot from Alex Vedetta, which was assisted by Matt Costigan to make the game 4-3 in favor of the pack at the 11:43 mark.
Mazikowski got in yet another fight, and was arguably one of the Pack’s scrappiest players throughout the game. Mazikowski even got slammed to the ground at one point, and then got up and started swinging.
Alex Robinson ended up picking up his own rebound off a missed shot and backhanded it to the top shelf for an Icepack goal, and brought the score to 5-3 on a power play, at the 16:19 mark. The score would stay this way going into the second intermission.
The Tar Heels opened the third period with a goal 1:25 in to bring them within one of the Pack, but this hope for a comeback would not last for long.
Laythe Jadallah ended up with revenge on the no-goal call earlier in the game, as he took a shot that trickled past the UNC goaltender and stuck it in the back of the net for an Icepack goal to make the game 6-4 with six minutes played.
Almost immediately after the Jadallah goal, Parker Szarek made a smooth move around a UNC defender and put the puck at the top of the shelf to make the game 7-4.
Moments later Tyler Alfonzetti scored yet another goal to make the Pack lead a staggering 8-4 at the 7:39 mark. This meant that the Pack had scored three goals in basically a minute and a half.
Alfonzetti then took one of the last roughing penalties of the game in what was a brutally contested game. Eventually the UNC goaltender saved a strong shot by the Pack, but turned the puck over which led to an immediate shorthanded goal for Eric Todd, which put NC State ahead at the 13:58 mark.
As the game was winding down, UNC scored a garbage-time goal with 31.5 seconds left, which put the game at 9-5 in favor of the Pack, and this was the final score.
The IcePack will return to action on Nov. 2, as they will take on the UNC-Charlotte 49ers at the Iceplex in Raleigh.