Stampede Win OT Thriller For Third Straight Victory
MUSKEGON, MI — C.J. Franklin scored the game-tying goal midway through the third period and the game winner with 28 seconds remaining in overtime as the Sioux Falls Stampede topped the Muskegon Lumberjacks 4-3 Saturday night in Muskegon.
Dennis Kravchenko assisted on the game-tying and game-winning goals and finished with three assists while Charlie Lindgren stopped 28 shots to earn his league leading 20th win of the season in goal.
The win was the Stampede’s third straight and 15th in their last 17 games. The Herd now hold a 28-9-1 record and remain four points ahead of Fargo for first place in the West. The Stampede are now 5-1-0 on their current nine-game road trip.
Sioux Falls grabbed the first goal of the game 7:55 in when Todd Skirving tallied his 14th goal of the season. Victor Bjorkung wristed a shot from the left point that was tipped by Kyle Schempp onto the Muskegon net, but the rebound bounced to Skirving who knocked in the rebound to give the Herd a 1-0 lead. Sioux Falls outshot Muskegon 14-13 in the period.
In the second, Muskegon tied the game 5:03 in when Michael Brodzinski scored on the powerplay. Brodzinski took a pass from the high slot and fired a shot past the stick side of Lindgren. Sioux Falls would regain the lead just over a minute later when Vinny Muto’s blast from the right point sailed past the stick side of Muskegon goaltender Kevin Lindskoug and into the net. Dennis Kravchenko earned an assist on the goal.
The Lumberjacks would respond though when they got a little help from the boards. A pass behind the Stampede net hit the back boards and bounced to the right of the goal where Adam Gilmour found himself all alone and wristed the puck into the net. Lindgren and the Stampede defense went to the left expecting the puck to bounce on the other side, but were unable to get back in time to prevent the goal. Cameron Darcy would give Muskegon the lead just 58 seconds later when he took a pass from Ben Storm and raced down the left wing side before cutting in front of the net and lifting the puck over the left shoulder of Lindgren to give Muskegon a 3-2 lead. Muskegon outshot the Herd 14-10 in the period.
The third period was full of intensity and hard hits as the Stampede physically outplayed the Lumberjacks for most of the period. Sioux Falls would tie the game at 9:17 of the period when Dennis Kravchenko won an offensive zone face-off to C.J. Franklin who skated to the high slot and slapped the puck into the upper left hand corner of the net to tie the game 3-3. Sioux Falls took control of the rest of the period as they outshot the Lumberjacks 10-5 and pushed the game into overtime.
Sioux Falls controlled most of the overtime period, outshooting the Lumberjacks 5-1. The Herd were finally able to break through with 28 seconds remaining when Franklin netted his second goal of the night to lift the Stampede to victory. Sioux Falls would once again score off a face-off draw as Ed McGovern took the puck deep in the right wing corner and backhanded it to Kravchenko who skated into the slot before sending it to the left wing side of Franklin who quickly fired the puck into the back of the net to give the Herd their 11th win of the season on the road.
Sioux Falls outshot Muskegon 39-31 on the night and finished 0-for-2 on the powerplay while Muskegon was 1-for-4.
Sioux Falls will close out their nine-game road trip with three games in four days next week. On Wednesday the Herd will travel to Omaha before closing out their long trip with games in Lincoln and Sioux City next Friday and Saturday.
Courtesy: Sioux Falls Stampede