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Gladiators wallop Warriors to jump into tie for first

GREENVILLE, S.C. — Five different Gladiators racked up multiple points and Gwinnett dominated the Greenville 6-2 on Saturday night at the BI-LO Center to move into a tie atop the South Division with the Road Warriors.

Casey Pierro-Zabotel picked up three assists, Alex Belzile scored and added two helpers. Doug Jones, Cody Carlson and Evan Bloodoff each had a goal and an assist.

Coyotes prospect Louis Domingue stepped up between the pipes in the opening period for Gwinnett. He made several big stops to keep the game scoreless and finished with 32 saves. Domingue has now won ten out of his last 11 starts.

The definitive win came one night after a harsh 4-0 loss at the hands of South Carolina at home.

After Greenville drew first blood on a Brandon Wong goal 12:55 into the period, Gwinnett’s offense came to life.

Scott Arnold and Jones set up Belzile behind the Greenville net, and the rookie forward banked the puck off goaltender Scott Stajcer at 15:33.

A little under two minutes later, Carlson lofted a shot from the point that slipped past a screened Stajcer to give the Gladiators a 2-1 lead on the power play. The first goal of Carlson’s pro career was assisted by Brandt and Belzile.

The Gladiators continued to pound away and 35 seconds after Carlson’s tally, Pierro-Zabotel fed Bloodoff. The Coyotes prospect did the rest. Bloodoff sped around the Greenville defense, elluded a poke check from close-in by Stajcer and deposited the puck top shelf for his 11th goal of the season.

Steven Delisle cut the deficit to one for the Road Warriors 4:29 into the third, but much as they did in the second, the Gladiators picked up the next three.

Rylan Galiardi put Gwinnett up 4-2 just 1:14 after Delisle’s tally. He took a backdoor pass from Bloodoff and tucked it past Stajcer.

Christian Ouellet padded the lead at 12:18, beating Stajcer with a quick wrist shot from the near side with Carlson and Fienhage assisting. Jones wrapped up the scoring at 19:15, deflecting a centering pass from Pierro-Zabotel and Belzile in to cap the 6-2 rout.

The Gladiators are next in action on New Year’s Eve, as they take on the Evansville IceMen at the Ford Center at 8:15 p.m.