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RECAP: Reece Vitelli ties the game late, scores shootout winning goal as Glads win, 4-3

Wednesday, February 28th
RECAP: Reece Vitelli ties the game late, scores shootout winning goal as Glads win, 4-3

DULUTH, Ga. The Atlanta Gladiators (18-35-2-1) defeated the Jacksonville Icemen (33-15-4-1) by a final score of 4-3 on Wednesday morning in the shootout, at Gas South Arena, in Duluth, Georgia.

BOX SCORE

First Star: Gustavs Davis Grigals (ATL) - 50 saves, win 

Second Star: Reece Vitelli (ATL) - 1 goal, 1 assist, 1 shootout goal 

Third Star: Matheson Iacopelli (JAX) - 1 goal

The Gladiators struck first in the contest, with Jackson Pierson (13th) cashing in on the power-play. Luke Prokop sent the puck towards the goal from the right point, and after getting blocked in front, the puck went right to Pierson, who slid it in past Joe Murdaca. (2:57)

Just six seconds later, Matheson Iacopelli wired a shot glove side past Gustavs Davis Grigals, registering as goal number 17 on the season. (3:03) 

With just over two seconds remaining in the period, Jacksonville scored again, with, this time, Christopher Brown scoring his 19th of the year. (19:58)

The two teams kept one another off the board in the second period, which was headlined by a series of sensational stops by Gladiator goaltender Gustavs Davis Grigals. 

Come the final frame, the Icemen scored first, with Derek Lodermeier finding his 9th goal of the season at even strength. (5:57)

With Atlanta down two and on their second consecutive power play, Reece Vitelli, Micah Miller, and Robert Calisti teamed up on a beautiful passing play, with Calisti (9th) finishing it off. (10:20)

Still down a goal, this time on the penalty kill, Reece Vitelli (9th) would score a clutch shorthanded goal, tying the game at three. The 22-year-old forward caught Joe Murdaca off-guard with a speedy wrap-around that snuck its way past the goal line. 

The game would go to the extra frame, where after seven minutes, the two teams remained deadlocked at three. 

After both teams came up empty in the first round of the shutout, both Micah Miller and Matheson Iacopelli would score for their respective clubs. 

With the shootout tied in a pivotal round three, Reece Vitelli, already with a goal and an assit in regulation, deked out Joe Murdaca, lifting the puck over his out stretched pad. 

Gustavs Davis Grigals would snuff out Luc Brown's last chance opportunity to tie the shootout, securing the win and the two points for Atlanta. 

Gustavs Davis Grigals stopped 50 shots in the win for Atlanta, while Joe Murdaca, in his return to Gas South Arena, denied 31 of 34. 

Check out the highlights of today's thrilling win below!

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