Game Recaps



Brandon McGahee/Columbus Cottonmouths


Nielsson Arcibal scored twice while the Columbus Cottonmouths produced 43 shots on Friday en route to a 5-1 victory over the Peoria Rivermen at the Columbus Civic Center. Defenseman Tyler Amburgey netted Peoria’s only goal.


With the loss, Peoria falls to 10-8-3 on the season and is now 1-1-0 against the Cottonmouths this year. In addition, goaltender Kyle Rank suffered the defeat in his Rivermen debut after making 38 saves.


For the full box score, click here.


For the second straight night, Columbus struck first at 6:24 of the opening frame when Andy Willigar beat Rank blocker side on a wrister from the left point. Chris Bailer and Steve Mele each earned an assist.


Instead of getting rattled, the Rivermen answered at 14:33 courtesy of Amburgey’s second goal in as many nights. From the right side, Garrett Vermeersch took a hit to make nice pass across to Corey Tamblyn, who then turned and found Amburgey at the top of the left circle. Amburgey collected the puck and beat Columbus netminder Travis Bosch to even the game at 1-1. With the assist, Vermeersch now has points in nine straight games.


The game turned physical late in the first period when Steve Morra was called for a five-minute elbowing major at 17:54. On an ensuing scrum in the Peoria zone, Will Aide jumped Rivermen captain Jarrett Rush and threw multiple punches to earn a five-minute fighting major. Additionally, Chris Bailer left the bench during the altercation and was issued a game misconduct. Then on the ensuing face off, Rush and Kyle Johnson dropped the gloves at center ice.


Columbus didn’t waste any time in taking the lead back as Arcibal deflected a shot into the back of the net just 46 seconds into the second period. Nearly seven minutes later, Columbus made it 3-1 with a breakaway goal from Levi Lind. From his own zone, Aide grabbed the puck after a shot was blocked in front and sent it ahead to Lind who was several feet behind the Rivermen defense. Lind proceeded to skate straight towards the goal and beat Rank on the forehand glove side.


Late in the middle frame, Arcibal made it 4-1 on the power play with his second goal of the game. At 18:07, Matt Gingera fought off a pair of Rivermen skaters from the right side and found Arcibal at the top of the left circle for the goal. Gingera and Tom Maldonado earned assists.


Gingera notched the final goal of the game for Columbus at 15:44 of the third on the power play. Following a checking-from-behind and fighting major, plus a game misconduct to Justin Gvora, Gingera beat Rank from the left circle for the 5-1 final.


For the second straight night, Columbus outshot Peoria 43-29 on the night. In addition, Peoria went 0-for-7 on the power play, while Columbus went 2-for-8.


The Rivermen continue their four-game road trip on Saturday with a 7:30 CST puck drop against the Huntsville Havoc at Breland Homes Ice. The game can be heard locally on CD Country 107.9 FM or online at Fans can also follow along via the live video and audio stream at