Titans hang on in 4-2 victory over Rebels

Three goals in a span of 5:14 was the difference in the New Jersey Titans’ 4-2 victory over the Philadelphia Rebels Friday night at the Class of 1923 Arena.

The win improves New Jersey’s record to 23-16-5 and puts them ahead of the Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Knights for second place in the East Division.

Justin Bofshever had a two point night (1g, 1a) while Brandon Perrone made 20 saves on 22 shots to earn the win. Rebels’ goaltender Eli Billing stopped 21 of 24 shots in the losing effort.

Shots were 10-4 in favor of Philadelphia in a scoreless first period. The Titans were 0-2 on the power play in the opening frame, and they killed off a cross-checking minor from Wade Novak thanks to some quality saves from Perrone.

Kyler Head opened the scoring at 5:29 of the second period when Kyle Jeffers hit him with a pass in the high slot. Head was able to control the puck and quickly ripped a shot past Billing for his fifth goal of the season. One minute later, Nick Boyagian took a turnaround shot from the top of the right faceoff circle, banking it off the left post and in to make it a 2-0 game. Earning his 17th goal of the season, Boyagian has now scored five times in his last six games.

At 10:13, Chris Garbe took a shot from the left-side boards that was kicked away by Billing. The rebound sprung right onto the stick of Bofshever, who slammed home the rebound for his second goal of the season while extending the lead to 3-0. Jimmy Glynn responded for Philadelphia with a power-play goal at 12:41, earning his fifth goal this season.

Late in the second, Singleton had a chance to make it 4-1 when the puck found his stick right in front of the goal. His initial shot was denied by Billing and the rebound trickled to Singleton’s right. He took a follow-up shot that was labeled for the twine, but Billing made a remarkable diving save to keep the puck out.

Singleton then took a penalty at the end of the second period, allowing the Rebels to start the third with a full two-minute power play. A minute and four seconds into the power play, the puck found its way to Glynn on the left side and banked a shot off the post and in for his second goal of the night, reducing the Rebels’ deficit to one goal.

The Rebels tried to make a push for the tying goal, but the Titans did a good job limiting their opportunities as time winded down. A few late penalties by Philadelphia put New Jersey on the power play, making it harder for the Rebels to even the score. They eventually pulled Billing for the extra attacker, but Gavin Gulash scored on the empty net to cushion the Titans’ lead.

The Titans are now 5-5-1 against the Rebels and have four more contests against them. Both teams will face each other in their next three games, including the second end of the home-and-home tonight at 7 p.m. The contest will also be the first of 10 straight home games for New Jersey.