KEARNEY, NE. – The Lancers hit the road tonight (2/18) to start a three-game weekend against the top team in the league, the Tri-City Storm.
The Lancers are coming off two straight victories over the Lincoln Stars, resulting in a 4-3 shootout win at home and a 5-2 win on the road, as they were looking to bring that same momentum into tonight’s matchup.
The Storm will be without their star goaltender, Arsenii Sergeev as he is serving out a six game suspension for roughing and abuse of an official from their 5-3 loss to the Fargo Force just a week ago.
The Lancers came out firing in the first period putting up three shots on goal in the opening minute of the matchup, and had the puck in the offensive zone for four out of the first five minutes of the game.
6:35 into the period, the Storm found the back of the net.
Tanner Adams headed into the attacking zone with Christian Fitzgerald, and with some nice back-and-forth passing, allowed Adams to net a backhanded shot over the blocker of Omaha goaltender, Kevin Pasche, giving the Storm a 1-0 lead.
Just under a minute later, following a Tri-City penalty, Cam Mitchell got things going in the attacking zone.
Mitchell creeped in the far side boards and got the Storm defense to close in on him and found a passing lane over to Basgall through traffic. Basgall let a wrist shot go from the top of the left side face-off circle to make it a 1-1 game with 12:34 left in the period.
Just under six minutes later, the Lancers got going in the attacking zone again. Cade Ahrenholz picked up the puck down low and sent it out to Riley Rosenthal who was near the blue line. He sent a shot through traffic which tipped off the stick of Ahrenholz and found the back of the net to give Omaha a 2-1 lead.
The Lancers took that one goal lead into the first intermission.
It only took the Lancers 1:20 to find the back of the net in the second period following a tripping penalty by Mitchell Miller just 39 seconds in.
Michael Cameron banked a pass to himself heading into the attacking zone and was forced into the corner. He saw Chris Hedden out near the top of the opposite side face-off circle and sauced a pass over to him through traffic. Hedden caught the pass cleanly and beat Wraneschitz over the blocker to take the 3-1 lead.
The Lancers held the 3-1 lead for over 10 minutes before the Storm struck back.
Andrew Strathmann picked up a pass from the corner off the stick of Fitzgerald and ripped a shot on net from the right side face-off dot. The shot tipped off of Lancers’ defenseman Ethan Elias, and fluttered over the stretched blocker hand of Pasche and found the back of the net. Making it a 3-2 lead for the Lancers heading into the second intermission.
The Storm outshot the Lancers 13-5 in the second period, knotting the shot count at 17 a side.
The third period was dominated by Tri-City as they outshot Omaha 12-2 in the final 20 minutes.
Stellar goaltending once again by Kevin Pasche really sealed the deal as he shut down the third ranked power-play in the league twice late in game which helped tremendously in closing out a 3-2 victory for Omaha.
With Sioux City falling to Fargo by a score of 5-4 in regulation, the Lancers bounce back into second place in the west with a record of 22-11-3-2 as they now lead the Musketeers by one point, and extend their lead on the Lincoln Stars to three points.
The Lancers will be back in action tomorrow night (2/19) as they travel to Sioux Falls to take on the Stampede. That game can be caught on HockeyTV and Mixlr.