FHL All-Stars beat Outlaws

It seems like every time the Williamsport Outlaws do something, it’s a first for the city.

On the second day of 2013, the Outlaws continued the tradition as they hosted the FHL All-Star game at Airmen Pond at Bowman Field. Obviously, it was the first time in Williamsport’s history it played host to an outdoor All-Star hockey game.

The day was all about the fans as a Skills Competition kicked off the festivities.

Once on the ice, the event continued with no play embodying the spirit of the day more than Paul Arnott and James Sanford’s fake fight midway through the third period. Both players dropped their gloves with what looked like the start of a fight. But once the players got done sizing each other up, a game of rock-paper-scissors broke out with a fake fall and punches coming at the end.

The FHL All-Stars prevailed 18-13 over the Outlaws in the FHL’s first All-Star game.

“It’s an All-Star game and we’re trying to put a show on for the fans,” Arnott said. “It was actually supposed to be a rock-paper-scissors match, but it looked like he wanted to pull a little slap-box there. The crowd liked it, so I think it was a success.”

As the fight embodied the fun of the game, the second period embodied everything an all-star game is supposed to be on the offensive end as 12 goals were posted in the 20 minutes.

Matt Smyth scored less than a minute into the period to give the Outlaws a brief 5-2 lead before the next four goals belonged to the FHL All-Stars.

Mike Atkinson got the offense going with the FHL All-Stars first goal. Ahmed Mahfouz and Gentry Zollars followed his efforts by each adding a goal. Luke Flicek then added the team’s fourth consecutive goal.

A Jamie Zaleski goal interrupted the onslaught by the All-Stars before they added five more for 11 goals through two periods. Tyler Noseworthy highlighted the surge with two consecutive goals.

Noseworthy scored a game-high four goals and was named the All-Star MVP. Smyth and Yanovitch recorded three goals apiece for the Outlaws.

“It’s always a fun day. It’s a fun game,” Outlaws coach Chris Firriolo said. “The guys get to go out and have some fun and showcase some offensive skill.”

On his way to scoring three goals, Yanovitch notched his first goal with the Outlaws to level the score at a goal apiece in the first period. Yanovitch nearly added a second moments later, but was stoned by Mike Brown, who won the goalie portion of the Skills Competition.

Matthew Puntureri and Smyth netted Williamsport’s other goals in the first period.

Puntureri’s goal surprised any fan that showed up early enough to watch the skills competition. The FHL All-Star team benefited in the goalie portion of the contest when Brown stopped all but one of the shots he faced.

That didn’t seem to bother Puntureri, who broke away from center ice for a one-on-one chance against Brown. Puntureri gave a quick move and put the puck over Brown’s shoulder for a 2-1 Outlaws lead. Smyth tallied his goal when he put a two-pass feed underneath Brown.

“There’s not a lot of competitive effort in these games,” Firriolo said. “It was a lot of fun and good for the fans and families that came to watch.”

One of the most entertaining moments of the night came when a young lady hit the first intermission shot to qualify for the $25,000 shot at the Outlaws’ last home game. It was the first time a person has hit the half-rink shot, which automatically gave the winner $1,000.