2010-12-10 / Sports

Holmes Powers Aviators To Third Straight Win

New York Aviators left winger Joseph Pelle Jr. (left) trades punches with tall Broome County defenseman Brad Pawlowski. New York Aviators left winger Joseph Pelle Jr. (left) trades punches with tall Broome County defenseman Brad Pawlowski. New York Aviators forward Chris Holmes recorded his first hat trick of the season on Sunday afternoon, and teammate Michael Thomson netted a goal and three assists to lead the A’s over the Rome Frenzy, 6-2, in Federal Hockey League action.

The Aviators are coming off back-toback wins over the Danbury Whalers for the first time this season, and closed out the first weekend of December with three straight wins to collect six points. The New York Aviators had defeated the Danbury Whalers by a score of 8-6 in Brooklyn at Aviator Sports and Events Center Friday night. This is the current longest winning streak that New York has put together all season.

Holmes got New York on the board with 2:05 left in the first period after putting Thomson’s pass behind Rome net minder Shane Davis. The Frenzy, though, led by forward Tibor Varga, tied the game after the Slovakia product registered the equalizer with 28 seconds left. The middle frame saw Varga net his second, just 6:34 into the stanza; however, it was Holmes and the Aviators recording all the scoring after that.

Matthew Puntureri of the Aviators (left) nudges asides Danbury Whalers center Lynn Beedle. Matthew Puntureri of the Aviators (left) nudges asides Danbury Whalers center Lynn Beedle. Thomson tied the game up, 2-2, off an Andrew Scampoli pass with under eight minutes left in the second.

Both teams would then head into the second intermission all knotted up at two.

New York and Holmes then went on to erupt for four goals in the third.

Matt Puntureri and KC Timmons tallied goals just 51 seconds apart to give the A’s the 4-2 lead. Holmes then iced it for New York with two late tallies from Thomson and line mate Casey Mignone to give the A’s the victory.

A’s goal keeper Kevin Druce stopped 33 shots for his second win in as many nights to help New York improve to 8- 7-1 on the season and advance into a tie for third place. Davis is charged with the loss.

Tickets can be purchased for the New York Aviators in advance online at NewYorkAviators.com, or by calling 718-758-7580.

Aviators Signs Deal With ECHL

The Aviators announced last week that they have come to terms with an affiliation agreement with the Wheeling (West Virginia) Nailers of the ECHL (www.echl.com), one of only two minor leagues directly connected to the NHL.

The Nailers are affiliated with both the Pittsburgh Penguins and the Montreal Canadiens of the NHL and the Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Penguins and the Hamilton Bulldogs of the AHL.

As a result of the affiliation, Aviators players will be “called up” to play for the Nailers on an as needed basis, while Nailers players will be “sent down” to the Aviators to get more playing time or develop specific aspects of their game.

The result will be higher-level players joining the Aviators, either from the Nailers or free agents seeking a fast track to the NHL. According to Jim Brooks, co-owner of the Nailers, more than 40 players have advanced from the team to the NHL since 1992.

In all, 450 ECHL players have reached the NHL, including four already this season and 35 in 2009-10.

“This is great news for our franchise, players and fans,” said Rob Miller, head coach of the Aviators. “Our fans will see higher quality players join our team and our players work a little bit harder because of this new route open for them to advance their careers.”

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