A two-goal second period, including a multi-point night for Dillan Fox propelled the Mississippi RiverKings to their third win of the season over the Bulls on Saturday, Dec. 30.
The scoring got started early in the first period when the RiverKings struck first. Ryan Marcuz broke into the Bulls' zone with a 2-on-1 opportunity and feathered a pass to Kristaps Bazevics streaking on the right wing side. Bazevics ripped a wrist shot past Birmingham goalie Maveric Parks and the RiverKings jumped on top 1-0, only 3:20 into the game.
Nearly 10 minutes later, Birmingham came back. While battling along the wall, Bulls defenseman Phil Tesoriero slipped undetected to the left wing board and took a wide open shot which beat Tyler Green and knotted the game at 1-1.
The second period is where the RiverKings would take the lead and not let go. At the 7:03 mark of the period, Dillan Fox would give the RiverKings the lead for good.
With Ralfs Grinbergs and Stephen Phee in the penalty box serving coincidental minors, Fox took advantage of the extra ice, intercepted a pass just outside of the slot in front of Parks and ripped a shot past the Bulls goaltender to take the 2-1 lead.
It only took 31 seconds for the RiverKings to get the insurance goal when Bryan Arneson swatted a puck out of mid-air, baseball swing style, while falling down and put it in the net to increase the RiverKings lead to 3-1.
Thanks to some strong goaltending and stout defense, the RiverKings would keep the Bulls off the scoresheet for the rest of the night, including surviving a 5-on-3 situation for a full minute.
The RiverKings are back in action at the Landers Center on Friday night, Jan. 5, when the Peoria Rivermen visit Southaven for the first time. On Saturday night, the RiverKings stay home while the Fayetteville Marksmen arrive for their first time this season.