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Hrehoriak the hero as Ice Flyers win 2-1, Pensacola to face Macon in semifinal

The Pensacola Ice Flyers punched their ticket to the Southern Professional Hockey League President’s Cup semifinal with a dramatic 2-1 win over the Fayetteville FireAntz on Thursday night inside the Pensacola Bay Center.

Just like Tuesday’s Game One, the game was scoreless after the first period and before a late second period goal gave the Ice Flyers the 1-0 lead. With Andrew Schmit and Ken Neil streaking into the offensive zone, Josh Cousineau hit Neil with a stretch pass. Neil skated down the left wing boards and hit Schmit with a perfect pass that Schmit redirected into the net with 26.8 seconds remaining in the second.

Pensacola held onto their lead until Fayetteville’s Lawrence Cornellier put the puck past Matt Zenzola with 2:26 remaining in the third period. Less than a minute later, Stephen Hrehoriak fired a shot into the back of the net to make it 2-1 with just 1:32 remaining in regulation.

Zenzola stopped 39 of Fayetteville’s 40 shots on goal for his second win of the 2017 playoffs.

The Ice Flyers will face the Macon Mayhem in the semifinal of the 2017 SPHL playoffs. The Ice Flyers’ home game will be either Tuesday, April 18, or Wednesday, April 19, in the Pensacola Bay Center. The full series schedule will be released on Friday, April 14.

Photo courtesy Vanessa Johnson/Jurassic Photo