By Kathy Gierer, Columbus Ledger-Enquirer
The Columbus Cottonmouths battled back to salvage a split with the Fayetteville FireAntz with a 4-2 win over a season-high crowd of 5930 at a raucous Snake Pit on Saturday night.
Matt Gingera tallied a goal and an assist and continues his torrid scoring pace. Since joining the Snakes in early December, Gingera has contributed 18 goals and 10 assists to tie him with Jordan Braid and Bret Tyler for the Snakes scoring lead with 28 points.
Gingera acknowledged the electricity generated by the crowd. Led by more than 2,500 soldiers from Fort Benning, the crowd encouraged the Snakes after they fell behind 2-1 after two periods of play.
"I had chills the whole night," Gingera said. "I've never played in front of a crowd that big."
Gingera's game winner was set up by Derek Pallardy's tying goal at the 4:06 mark of the third period. Mark Thorburn and Tom Maldonado assisted on Pallardy's goal, which gave the Snakes new life.
Andrew Loewen continued to shine in net, though a decision to leave his crease to play the puck backfired in the second period.