ELMIRA, N.Y. - December 8, 2013 - Danny Hobbs recorded a natural hat trick in the span of 12 minutes and 40 seconds in the third period to lead the Jackals to a 5-2 win over the Fort Wayne Komets on Sunday at First Arena. The win was Elmira's third straight and improved the Jackals to 7-10-2 on the season.
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The Jackals wanted to avoid surrendering the first goal and playing from behind like they did against Fort Wayne on Friday night. Jordan Pietrus turned the tables on the Komets by notching his second shorthanded goal of the season 15:45 into the first period. Pietrus broke loose on the right wing and one-timed a pass from Jean Bourbeau past Fort Wayne's Andrey Makarov for his third goal of the year. As the first wound down it looked as though Elmira would head into the second up by one. But thinking quickly, defenseman Maxim Lamarche darted to the net from the blueline and whipped a Ludwig Karlsson pass behind Makarov to give the Jackals a 2-0 lead with 52 seconds remaining in the first. Maxime Clermont, who made his first start since November 22, stopped 15 shots in the first to anchor the defense.
Fort Wayne straightened things out in its own end during the second period and kept the Jackals at bay. Elmira managed eight shots on Makarov but could not cash in to extend the lead. At the other end of the ice the Jackals were tidy, as well, and limited Fort Wayne to just six shots in the period. Clermont answered the bell on each occasion and helped Elmira head into the third with its two-goal lead intact.
Hobbs took over in the third period with three goals in a row to secure his first professional hat trick. The first came at 5:55 with assists to Bourbeau and Jakub Culek. It only took Hobbs 21 seconds of game play to complete the trick. The first came off of the rush at 18:14 with Rob Bellamy and Pietrus assisting. Then, off of the ensuing faceoff, Hobbs was set up off the rush again by Bourbeau and Culek to cap the outburst. The three goals gave Hobbs seven on the year while Pietrus (1 goal, 2 assists) and Bourbeau (3 assists) also managed three-point games. Fort Wayne notched its two goals in the final minute to spoil Clermont's bid for his first pro shutout.
Clermont earned his second win of the season with 37 saves while Makarov stopped 18 shots in earning the loss. Elmira was 5-for-5 on the penalty kill and 0-for-3 on the power play.
Mark your calendars! The Jackals are back on home ice Wednesday, December 11 to take on the Florida Everblades. You could be the lucky fan selected to come onto the ice at intermission and play to win free golf at Willowcreek Wednesday. Don't forget that groups of 10 or more who book in advance receive discounts off the box office price and preferred seating based on availability. Call 607-734-7825 to get your group outing booked.