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October 23, 2003

GENERALS NIP WILDCATTERS IN OVERTIME

Fortier Hat Trick leads way for Greensboro

GREENSBORO - The Greensboro Generals got shots on goal early and often, and en route to earning a 6-5 overtime victory over the Texas Wildcatters, managed 65 shots on goal. In front of the Generals faithful at the Greensboro Coliseum, Greensboro earned their first victory of the 2003-04 season, while dropping the Wildcatters to 1-3-1 in the expansion campaign.

The game also played host to a unique double-dip, as Greensboro’s Eric Fortier and the Wildcatters Bobby Cunningham each had a hat trick, scoring three goals. This marks the third time that two hat tricks have occurred in an ECHL game, dating back to November 2, 2002. On November 2, the Generals Chris Bell and Pete Gardiner each had a hat trick, in an 8-2 defeat of the Charlotte Checkers. The only other game in which two hat tricks were scored came when the Florida Everblades defeated the Peoria Rivermen on January 7th. It also marks the sixth Generals hat trick since November 2nd.

In the opening period, the Wildcatters Bobby Cunningham started the scoring with a goal at the 4:36 mark. The Generals Matt Turek answered by putting a wrister past the outstretched hand of Texas goaltender Davis Parley, knotting the game at 1-1. However, Texas reassumed the lead as Tony Lawrence took advantage of a power play opportunity, making the score 2-1 at the end of the first period.

The Wildcatters continued to build off the momentum, scoring at the 11:16 mark of the second as Cory Morgan sent home his second goal of the season, making the score 3-1. In the closing minute of the period, Greensboro’s Eric Fortier would answer with a shot of his own, when on an assist from Sam Ftorek and Geno Parrish, cut the deficit to 3-2 with his first goal of the game.

Fortier would continue his remarkable play in the third, when he scored his second goal of the game, using his shooting past Parley to tie the game at 3-3. Just over thirty seconds later, Mike Bayrack out pursued the Texas defensemen to score the second Greensboro goal of the period, giving the Generals their first lead of the game. Matt Turek pushed the Generals lead to 5-3 as he netted his second goal of the game, sending the 2,239 fans in attendance to their feet. With just over one minute remaining in the third, Texas’ Bobby Cunningham scored two power-play goals and sent the game to overtime tied at 5-5.

In the overtime Greensboro needed just one shot of their 64 total shots on goal, to go home victorious. Eric Fortier sent home his third goal at the 1:39 mark.

The Generals now travel for road games on consecutive nights when they face the Columbia Inferno on Friday and the Greenville Grrrowl on Saturday. The Generals will return to the Greensboro Coliseum next Thursday night, October 30th for another R.H. Barringer sponsored Thirsty Thursday where draft beer will be available for $1, followed by a Halloween Bash when they face the Atlantic City in the first meeting since last season’s

 
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