Friday Finals: Mustangs tighten Central race with 7th straight win
Peoria 3 @ Rochester 2 - Thanks to 38 saves from goalie Cole Walter, the Peoria Mustangs pulled to within a point of the 1st place Grizzlies thanks to a 3-2 win on Friday. Rochester struck first with a 1st period goal from Micah Gernander. The Mustangs responded with three straight goals from Ethan Chesney, Thomas Kayner, and Reid Lune to take a 3-1 lead. The Grizzlies pulled to within a goal thanks to a power play goal from Matthew DeRosa late in the 3rd period, but could not find the equalizer as Peoria extended their winning streak to seven straight games. Grizzlies goalie Zach Wiese made 21 saves in the loss.
Butte 4 @ Helena 1 – Butte goalie Tommy Near was the star of the show, making 59 saves in a 4-1 win on Friday for the Cobras. After a scoreless 1st period, the Cobras took a 2-1 lead in the 2nd period thanks to two goals from Jonah Gilbert. Andrew MacCallum scored the lone goal for the Bighorns. In the 3rd period, the Cobras secured the 4-1 win thanks to a pair of goals from Zane Cluphf. Helena goalie Anthony Adleman made 38 saves in the loss.
Northeast 4 @ Bay State 0 – Espen Reager stopped all 22 shots that came his way for his 3rd shutout of the season as the Generals blanked the Bobcats, 4-0. After a scoreless 1st period, the Generals struck for their first goal later in the 2nd period as Payton Felix netted his 13th goal of the year. In the 3rd period, the Generals put the game on ice with goals from Carson Asper, Nolan Merulli, and Nicklaus Obourn. Bobcats goalie Zack Roncarati played well in the loss, making 62 saves.
TX RoadRunners 5 @ Atlanta 4 (SO) – The RoadRunners kept the pressure on the Capitals for the 4th and final playoff spot thanks to a 5-4 win on Friday. The RoadRunners never trailed in the game thanks to 1st period goals from Logan Bellar and Mason Evans, a 2nd period goal from Seth Payson and a 3rd period goal from Tim Marsico. The Capitals got goals from Vyacheslav Nilov, Nikita Pecheritcyn and two from Gunner Moore. Bellar ended up with the shootout winner for the RoadRunners. Christian Wong-Ramos made 43 saves in the win, while Bryan Verna made 21 saves in the loss.
St. Louis 6 @ Wausau 1- Tony Andrews scored twice and Owen Carlson made 22 saves as the Jr. Blues came away with a 6-1 road win in Wausau. It was all Jr. Blues from the start as they scored three goals in the 1st period, which included goals from Andrews, Ike Zeier, and Jared Bratton. Wausau found the back of the net in the 2nd period with their lone goal of the game from Nolan Gifford. In the 3rd period, Andrews added his second of the game and Matt McGowan and Joey Solimando also scored to make it a 6-1 final. RiverWolves goalie Joseph LaForge made 39 saves in the loss.
New Ulm 2 @ Granite City 3 – The Lumberjacks handed the Steel their 4th straight loss thanks to a close 3-2 win on Friday. New Ulm scored first thanks to a 1st period goal from Jacob Zowin. The Lumberjacks responded with back-to-back goals from Matthew Delany and Kullan Daikawa to put the home side up, 2-1. Late in the 2nd period, the Steel tied the game at 2-2 thanks to a goal from Jake Henthorne. Late in the 3rd period, Noah Bissett netted the game-winner for Granite City. Lumberjacks goalie Tim Pundt made 22 saves in the win, while AJ Cohen made 30 saves in the Steel loss.
Alexandria 2 @ North Iowa 5 – The Bulls jumped out to an early lead and never looked back as five different players scored in a 5-2 win. The Bulls got two goals in the 1st period from Brayden Uttech and Hayden Fox to go up 2-0. The lead increased to 3-0 with a 2nd period goal from Garrett Feeman. The lead swelled to 5-0 as Sota Isogai and Jack Campion scored in the 3rd period. Logan Stellmach and Sean Kenny would score late in the game to give the Blizzard their two goals of the night. Bulls goalie Evan Babekuhl made 16 saves in the win, while Joey Greilich made 39 saves in the loss.
Mid Cities 1 @ El Paso 11 – The Rhinos rolled against the Stars on Friday, thanks to an 11-1 win. Trey Erramouspe and Noah Easterson had two goals apiece in the win. Tristin Maestas, Cooper Anderson, Colin Kerchoff, Colton Chipman, Ian Carpenter, Noah Decker, and John Mulvihill also scored in the Rhinos win. Stamos Giatrakis had the lone goal for the Stars. Rhinos goalie Rustam Kulizade made 6 saves in the win. Stars goalie Nahuel Veyan stopped 25 of 30 shots and Sean Guerin stopped 23 of 29 shots in the loss.
Missoula 6 @ Gillette 3 – Liam Bland had two goals and an assist as the Jr. Bruins moved into 2nd place in the Frontier Division thanks to a 6-3 road win in Gillette. The Wild led 3-2 after two period, which included goals from Brock Trboyevich, Tristan Baker, and Ethan Becker, while Mi-Kwan Tallman and Cayce Balk scored for Missoula. The Jr. Bruins then erupted for four goals in the 3rd period, including two from Bland and others from Owen Miley and Trevor Prince. Missoula goalie Maxim Currie made 38 saves in the win, while Cole Wheaton made 39 saves in the loss.
Bozeman 7 @ Yellowstone 0 – Bozeman goalie Evan Wittchow stopped all 27 shots that came his way for his first shutout of the season as the Icedogs handled the Quake on Friday with a 7-0 win. Seven different players lit the lamp for Bozeman, which included a 1st period goal from Colin Cobb, three goals in the 2nd period from Sam Bourdon, Luke McKay, and Blake Nerney, and three more goals in the 3rd period from Eric Thompson, Kamden Sengheiser, and Max Schumacher. Yellowstone goalie Hudgel Selk made 50 saves in the losing effort.
Milwaukee 2 @ Oregon 3 – Two goals in the 3rd period and 28 saves from goalie Cole Garver propelled the Tradesmen to a 3-2 win over the visiting Power on Friday. Oregon jumped out to a 1-0 lead thanks to a 1st period goal from Carter Waters. The Power took a 2-1 lead in the 2nd period with goals from Ben Cope and Jackson Terpstra. The Tradesmen came back in the 3rd period with two goals in the final seven minutes as Sam VanderHoeven and Parker Severson found the back of the net. Milwaukee goalie Cole Shane made 30 saves in the loss.