Drapluk Shines In Rivermen Return Over Roanoke

February 1, 2024 - 09:20 pm

ROANOKE, VA – Joseph Drapluk marked his return to the Rivermen with a goal and two assists in Peoria’s 4-3 victory over the Roanoke Rail Yard Dawgs on Thursday Night at the Berglund Center.


Despite a strong first few minutes by Peoria, the Rail Yard Dawgs took a 1-0 lead off of a point shot from the left-wing side. Roanoke, with all of the momentum, went to the power play looking to extend their lead. They were given a rude surprise. Joseph Drapluk, in his first game back with the Rivermen since last season, won a race short-handed to the left-wing corner. After shielding the puck, he sent a back-handed pass to JM Piotrowski in the slot who deflected the puck into the back of the net to tie the game 1-1. On the same kill, Roanoke iced the puck which led to a Rivermen offensive zone draw. Piotrowski won it back to Drapluk who rifled a wrist shot into the back of the net for a 2-1 lead and Peoria’s league-leading 6th short-handed goal of the year.


The Rivermen dominated the play in the second period and were able to extend their lead. A point shot from Cale List deflected off of the post and then off of the back of goaltender Austyn Roudebush and into the net. List’s goal gave Peoria a 3-1 lead and got the Rivermen going for the rest of the period, keeping the Dawgs penned in their zone for most of the middle frame.


Roanoke, known as a third-period team, came back with two goals in the first 64 seconds of the third period to tie the game. But a few minutes later Jordan Ernst, skating down the left-wing side, was able to rifle a low shot in the short side on Roudebush to give the Rivermen a 4-3 lead. The Rivermen held their lead for the remainder of the contest to secure their fifth straight victory. They will take on the Fayetteville Marksmen in a battle of the first and third-place teams on Friday.