OMAHA, NE. - The Lancers closed out the two home game weekend with the Sioux Falls Stampede. A team that the Lancers took down just a week prior, at the Denny Sanford Premier Center in Sioux Falls, South Dakota, by a score of 6-2.
Both teams were coming off rough losses from the night before. With the Lancers falling to the at the time, 8th place Des Moines Buccaneers by a score of 3-1.
The Stampede were coming off a 5-1 loss to the Tri-City Storm, who are currently in first place in the United States Hockey League. So both teams came into this one frustrated and hungry for a win.
The Stampede were able to strike first Karsen Dorwart found found Maddox Fleming behind the net. Fleming was able to connect on a pass out front to Daniel Russel, who slipped one by the leg pad of Omaha goaltender, Tommy Heaney, to take the 1-0 lead just 4:18 into the period.
Six minutes later, the Lancer's fourth line got to work.
Ryan Gillespie got the puck in deep, which found Cade Ahrenholz below the goal line in the attacking zone. Ahrenholz was able to hit Luke Strickland who was charging towards the net. Strickland got two quick shots off. The first one resulting in a save by Stampede goaltender, Noah Grennan. But, Strickland got his stick on the rebound and blasted one under the arm of Grennan to make it a 1-1 game, just over the halfway point of the first period.
Just five minutes later, Cam Mitchell's line got going.
With just under five minutes to play in the opening period, Kennedy O'Connor worked the puck to the far side boards of the attacking zone to Mitchell. Mitchell creeped in and sent a wrist shot off the post. But, off the bounce, Garrett Wright was able to bury it to take the 2-1 lead heading into the first intermission.
The second period was another strong start for the Stampede. Resulting in another goal for Russel.
Merril Steenari won a battle along the boards and was able to get the loose puck to Russel, who immediately sent a shot by Heaney to tie the game at two goals apiece early in the period.
It only took the Lancers four minutes to retake the lead as Morgan Winters won an offensive zone face off to start a power-play.
Winters knocked the puck to Jared Wright, who found Matt Basgall at the point. Following catching the pass, Basgall walked the blue line and sent a 60 foot shot through traffic which resulted in a power-play goal. Giving the Lancers a 3-2 lead with 14:14 left in the second.
Toward the tail end of the second period, Jack Reimann took the puck coast to coast and got a shot on goal. Resulting in a save by Heaney.
But coming in on the far side was JP Turner who was able to bang home to rebound to tie the game 3-3, which was the score the period concluded as.
The third period is when the Lancer's defense really got going. Forcing all shots from odd angles, and allowing zero second opportunities for the Stampede offense.
Just over eight minutes into the period, Winters picked up a pass from Basgall at the red line and took his possession into the attacking zone while on the power-play. After carrying the puck in too deep, he dropped a pass up the boards to Michael Cameron. After moving in toward the net, Cameron hit Jared Wright with a pass, who was camped out at the top of the goal crease.
After receiving the pass, J. Wright made a move to the short side of the net and snuck one past the skate of Grennan to take the 4-3 lead just before the halfway point of the period.
Scoring was silenced for both teams until Sioux Falls pulled their goalie for the extra attacker.
After the Stampede pulled their goalie and a defensive zone face off win by Winters, Cameron picked up the loose puck and sent it 180 feet to the back of the empty net at the other end, sealing a 5-3 win for Omaha.
This win improved the Lancer's record to 18-10-3-1, as they still sit tied for second place in the western conference standings.
The Lancers will be hitting the road next week as they will be paying the Waterloo Black Hawks a visit. Puck is set to drop at 7:05PM CST. That game can be caught on HockeyTV and Mixlr.