YOUNGSTOWN, OH – The Youngstown Phantoms (8-6-3-0, 19 points) came back twice from one-goal deficits to force overtime, but Gabe Temple’s goal 1:49 into the extra frame lifted the Sioux Falls Stampede to a 3-2 victory Friday night at the Covelli Centre.
“There was a couple of things I didn’t really like in our game, and it’s not based on the score line,” said Phantoms Head Coach Brad Patterson. “I felt we were content to be soft in areas, we turned a lot of pucks over. But when we did have possessions, what our decision-making was with those, specifically through neutral ice. We had opportunities to make plays and that’s something we have to be better at.”
Temple scored the game’s opening goal as well, netting a power play goal 12:59 into the first period. Temple snapped a wrister from the top of the left circle past the glove of Dominic Basse (20 saves) to give the Stampede a 1-0 lead. It was just the fourth time in 15 games Sioux Falls scored the opening goal of a game.
Youngstown tied the game 4:18 into the second period. Matthew Cassidy picked up a loose puck in front of his own bench and found John Beaton cutting up ice. Beaton sped past two defenders and snapped a wrist shot from the inner edge of the left circle past the glove of Grant Adams (29 saves) to knot the game at 1-1. It was Beaton’s sixth goal of the year and extended his scoring streak to four games. “(John) has been tremendous for us,” said Patterson. “He can do it all: he skates so well; he’s got such a strong frame. The first ten games in the (USHL) for guys, no matter how old you are, what league you’re coming from, there’s a big developmental curve. He was good during that time, but I think he realized how good he can be and we’re starting to see that right now.”
Sioux Falls retook the lead at 4:28 of the third period on Will Dineen’s first USHL goal, but Youngstown tied it late in the period. Jan Kern tried to knock a puck out of midair, but shot it off Adams’ mask. The puck settled into the blue paint and Josh DeLuca smacked it into the yawning cage at 17:06 to level the game at 2-2 and force overtime.
Both teams had a few good scoring chances, Youngstown’s best coming when Trevor Kuntar got a step on his defender and forced his way to the net, but Adams held him off. Moments later, Tim Bakos picked up the rebound of a Jayson Dobay shot and started a rush up ice for Sioux Falls. A 2-on-1 quickly developed with Temple coming down the left side as Bakos carried up the right. Entering the Youngstown zone, Bakos slipped a cross-ice feed to Temple, who fired into the net to give Sioux Falls the victory.
These two teams will wrap up their season series Saturday night at the Covelli Centre. It’s ‘Hockey Fights Cancer” night, and the Phantoms will be wearing special jerseys that will be auctioned off after the game. Puck drop is scheduled for 7:05pm Eastern and the game will be broadcast of HockeyTV and Western Reserve Radio.
By the Numbers
Shots – 31
Saves – 20
Power Play – 0/2
Penalty Kill – 1/2
Goals – Beaton, DeLuca
Assists – Cassidy, Kern (2), Merkulov