The Jamestown Ironmen (36-19-4) went into Friday night's game against the Johnstown Tomahawks (27-20-12) looking to secure a first- round bye in the upcoming playoffs by clinching second place with a win at the Jamestown Savings Bank Arena.
Unfortunately, the Ironmen failed to take the first game in the two-game set, falling 5-0, forcing them to win in today's matchup to clinch the bye.
The first period of play was action packed as the Tomahawks jumped out to a two-goal lead with goals by Cobi Smith-Mass and Brandon Reinholz as Reinholz, Jeff Bergh, and Connor Wright assisted.
The second period didn't see any goals added to the scoreboard on either side and the shots on goal were limited as well.
Mitch Hall added the Tomahawks' third goal early in the third period, assisted by Reinholz and Wright, and there were two more empty-net goals near the end of the game by Wright and Jordan Watt, both unassisted.
Ironman Goaltender Joey Ballmer struggled to catch his bearings from the beginning while on the offensive side of the puck, the Ironmen missed on a few breakaway opportunities throughout the game.
Ballmer's record now falls to 8-5 on the season, while Johnstown goaltender Chris Truehl earned his first shutout in North American League play.
The Ironmen take on Johnstown again today at 5 p.m. at the Jamestown Savings Bank Arena, and will honor the parents and billet families of the players before the puck drops.
Also a reminder that if those entering the Arena use the code BLUE when purchasing a ticket to the game, $1 of each ticket will be donated to the Blue Star Mothers of America organization, which provides support to active duty and veteran military personnel in the community.