BY: Ray Schmitt, Voice of the Greenville Road Warriors
The Greenville Road Warriors made their first ever visit to the Sun National Bank Center a memorable one as they defeated the Trenton Titans 5-2 on Friday night. The win improved Greenville to 32-19-4 on the season.
Greenville put Trenton in a two-goal hole early on thanks to strikes on the power play and at even strength. The Titans spotted the Road Warriors a lengthy 5-on-3 power play in the second minute of the game and they were able to cash in with Justin Bowers netting his 17th goal of the season 2:10 into the game. Brandon Wong built the lead to two by hammering a rebound past Trenton starter Dan Meyers at 6:26. That prompted a goaltending change by the Titans and Brad Phillips came on in relief. The change sparked some momentum for Trenton as Andy Bombach scored on Jason Missiaen just past the midpoint of the frame. That was the only one of six Trenton shots in the first to elude Missiaen as Greenville took the lead into the break.
Trenton would find the tying goal early in the second period with Bombach scoring a power play goal thanks to a deflection in front that left Missiaen unable to reach Bombach’s bid. Missiaen slammed the door on the remaining 13 Trenton shots in the period and a power play goal by Jyri Niemi restored the Road Warriors’ lead. The goal was Niemi’s ninth of the season and sixth in the month of February alone. Bretton Cameron helped the puck elude Phillips by providing a screen in front.
The Road Warriors asserted their control of the game in the third period with a pair of goals and coasted to the win down the home stretch. Marc-Olivier Vallerand finished off a flashy passing play by Wong and Bretton Cameron just 1:19 into the frame to push the lead to two. The goal was Vallerand’s team-leading 27th of the season and leaves him one shy of his team record 28 from last season. Sean Berkstresser added his second goal in as many nights with help from Francis Meilleur and Jeremy Gouchie with 3:35 to play and pushed Greenville’s lead to a comfortable three. Missiaen kept Trenton off the board in the third with 10 saves.
With 28 saves on the night, Missiaen earned his 14th win of the season. Greenville was 2-for-6 on the power play and 6-for-7 on the penalty kill.