RiverKings school Columbus in FaceOff Field Trip game

SOUTHAVEN, Miss. – The Mississippi RiverKings (18-15-2) rolled the Columbus Cottonmouths, 5-1, Tuesday afternoon at the Landers Center as part of the RiverKings second FaceOff Field Trip of the season. Students from the Mid-South filled the building to enjoy both a hockey game get lessons in different school subjects through the day.

The RiverKings wasted little time before jumping on top of Columbus. Just 1:02 into the first Paul Ciarelli potted his third goal in the last two games on a rebound in front of the net for a 1-0 lead. 10 minutes later the RiverKings went up 2-0 when Leo Thomas scored a shorthanded goal. He knocked the puck loose at the defensive zone blue line then raced in on a breakaway before snapping a shot under the crossbar for a 2-0 lead on his 12th goal of the season. Just a few minutes after that Devin Mantha redirected a shot from Dylan Quaile for a 3-0 advantage heading to the first intermission.

The Cottonmouths came with some early pressure to start the second, but the RiverKings worked through that and then took a 4-0 lead less than halfway into the period. Daniel Sobotka forced a shot towards the net and Bryon Paulazzo followed with a few shots on the rebound. His second attempt went under goalie Andrew Loewen and Mantha stashed it home for his second of the game and a four-goal lead. Just over a minute later Joey Holka got on the board with his first pro goal to make it 5-0. Ryan Marcuz sent a pass to Thomas at the right circle. He then found a cutting Holka who had an easy tap in at 10:45 of the period.

Columbus ended Adam Courchaine's shutout bid early in the third. While on their sixth power play of the game Tyler MacPherson sent a slap shot from the right circle that went past Courchaine to make it 5-1. Columbus wouldn't get any closer as Courchaine made 12 saves in the third, and 27 in the game, for the 5-1 RiverKings win.

Notes: The RiverKings went 1-1 in their two FaceOff Field Trip games in 2014-15... The team took warmups in Derek Landmesser jerseys from previous seasons for his birthday... Leo Thomas added a goal and assist and is now on a six-game scoring streak (5g, 6a)... The RiverKings now lead the SPHL with four shorthanded goals.

The RiverKings are back home Friday, Jan. 30 against the Pensacola Ice Flyers for Heroes Night presented by Delta Medical Center. The RiverKings honor our local police officers, firefighters, doctors and other real-life heroes during the game. Single-game tickets can be purchased at riverkings.com/ticketmaster and groups of 15 or more get a discount, with group tickets starting at $8 per ticket, by calling the front office at 662-342-1755.

About the Mississippi RiverKings

The Mississippi RiverKings are supported by their community partners, season ticket holders, fans, and by program-related investments of the Maddox Foundation, an independent private foundation based in Hernando, Miss. To find out more about the RiverKings, call 662.342.1755 or visit www.riverkings.com.

Posted by Lukas Favale at 1:04 PM

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PEO y-Peoria 56 38 13 5 81
MAC x-Macon 56 33 16 7 73
PEN x-Pensacola 56 33 16 7 73
HUN x-Huntsville 56 30 16 10 70
KNX x-Knoxville 56 30 20 6 66
EVV x-Evansville 56 27 20 9 63
MRK x-RiverKings 56 29 25 2 60
RKE x-Roanoke 56 26 26 4 56
BIR Birmingham 56 22 28 6 50
FAY Fayetteville 56 12 38 6 30
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Updated: April 8, 2018

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