YOUNGSTOWN, OH – “I grabbed him in between (the second and) the third and said ‘hey, we need a spark,’” said Phantoms head coach Brad Patterson. He was speaking of defenseman Andrew Petrillo, who was playing forward in the third period due to injuries. Petrillo tied the game at 2-2 with 2:13 remaining in regulation, forcing overtime. However, after a scoreless overtime the Youngstown Phantoms (1-3-1-1, 4 points) dropped the shootout 2-1 and fell to the Muskegon Lumberjacks by the final score 3-2 Saturday night at the Covelli Centre.
“It’s tough to swallow that loss,” said Patterson. “I thought we were dynamite in the third period, it was probably the best 20 minutes we’ve played.”
After a scoreless first period, Muskegon struck twice during the second to jump out to a 2-0 lead. Wyatt Bongiovanni snapped a wrister past Wouter Peeters (30 saves) at 10:09 and Egor Afanasyev scored on a redirect at 13:21 to build the lead for the visitors.
Youngstown got on the board at 15:06 with a power play goal. Curtis Hall was credited with the marker after a net-front scrum off a shot from the point. The goal was Hall’s second of the season and cut the Muskegon lead to 2-1 heading into the second intermission.
The Phantoms tied things up at 17:47 of the third period thanks to Petrillo. After a shot block by Muskegon kicked back to him, Petrillo picked up the loose puck in the slot and fired a low wrister that skipped over Adam Brizgala’s (32 saves) stick and in to knot things up at 2. Neither team scored in the remaining 2:13 of the period and the game went to overtime.
In the extra frame, both teams had numerous scoring chances, including Emilio Pettersen just missing on a wrap-around attempt for Muskegon and Alex Barber and Julian Kislin hitting posts for the Phantoms, but neither team was able to score and the shootout was required to determine the winner.
In the shootout, Michael Graham and Eriks Zohovs both converted on their chances in the first round. In the second round Mikael Hakkarainen and Curtis Hall were both stopped, keeping things tied at 1-1. In the third round, Pettersen scored for Muskegon and Matthew Barry was stopped by Brizgala, securing the victory for the Lumberjacks.
These two teams will face off again in Youngstown next Friday night as they continue their three-game series. Puck drop is scheduled for 7:05pm and broadcasts will be available on YPHR and HockeyTV.
By the Numbers
Shots – 34
Saves – 30
Power Play – 1/4
Penalty Kill – 2/2
Goals – Hall, Petrillo
Assists – Cassaro (2), Joyaux, Metsa
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Headquartered in Chicago, Illinois, the USHL celebrates its 16th season as the nation's only Tier I junior hockey league in 2017-18. 49 players were chosen in the 2017 NHL Draft and more than 400 players on team rosters this season committed to NCAA Division I schools, further establishing the USHL as the world’s foremost producer of junior hockey talent.
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