SIOUX FALLS, SD – Despite being down two goals five minutes into the third period, the Youngstown Phantoms (11-5-3-1, 26 points) forced overtime before ultimately falling 4-3 to the Sioux Falls Stampede Saturday night at the Denny Sanford PREMIER Center, snapping the Phantoms’ six-game winning streak.
“All-in-all, it was a back-and-forth battle, it could have gone either way,” said Phantoms Head Coach Brad Patterson. “I’m proud of the guys for coming back, but I think the lesson learned was…we need to stay out of the box a little bit more…it ruins the flow of the game, and we’re a team that’s based off of a lot of energy, and when you can’t get that flow it’s tough to do.”
After a scoreless first period, Sioux Falls opened the scoring just under five minutes into the second period. Kirill Panyukov redirected a point shot to give the Stampede a 1-0 lead at 4:27. Youngstown tied the game late in the period thanks to a powerplay redirect by Mike Regush. Regush redirected Michael Joyaux’s shot from the point at 17:55 for this third goal of the season, knotting the game at 1. Tommy Parrottino was credited with the secondary assist on the goal, giving him points in five straight games. Sioux Falls regained the lead with just nine seconds remaining in the second period on another deflection goal, this one by Matt Quercia that just squirted through the pads of Wouter Peeters (21 saves) and settled over the goal line. Sioux Falls entered the third period with a 2-1 lead, but Youngstown has points in five of the nine games that they’ve trailed entering the final period.
After a powerplay goal from Reid Stefanson gave the Stampede a 3-1 lead at 5:29, the Phantoms began their comeback. Julian Kislin cut the lead in half at 8:27 with his third goal of the season, cruising down the slot and beating Jaxson Stauber (30 saves) to the blocker side. Joey Abate received an assist on the play, his first point as a Phantom.
Youngstown got a pair of power plays late and pulled Peeters for the extra attacker with 16:59. Sioux Falls successfully killed off the penalty to Ryan Sidorski, but when Mitchell Mattson was called for checking from behind at 18:21, the Phantoms cashed in. Max Ellis beat Stauber with a wrist shot to the glove side at 18:54 to tie the game for Youngstown. The goal was Ellis’ seventh of the season, extending his scoring streak to ten games and forcing overtime.
In the extra period, Chase Gresock was called for interference at 1:48, giving Sioux Falls the man-advantage. Just over a minute into the power play, former Phantom Kevin Conley blasted home a one-timer from the right circle to give Sioux Falls the victory.
Although the loss snapped the Phantoms’ six-game winning streak, Youngstown still has points in 11 of their last 12 games and remains atop the USHL’s Eastern Conference, one point clear of the Chicago Steel. The announced attendance of 10,036 is the largest crowd the Youngstown Phantoms have played in front of since joining the USHL in 2009.
The Phantoms return to the Covelli Centre on Thursday for a School Day Game against the Cedar Rapids RoughRiders. Puck drop is scheduled for 10:00AM Eastern and broadcasts will be available on YPHR and HockeyTV.
By the Numbers
Shots – 33
Saves – 21
Power Play – 2/6
Penalty Kill – 5/7
Goals – Ellis, Kislin, Regush
Assists – Abate, Barry, Joyaux (2), Needham, Parrottino
For all the latest news, follow the Phantoms on Twitter (@YtownPhantoms) and ‘Like’ them on Facebook (www.Facebook.com/YoungstownPhantoms). A full version of the Phantoms 2017-18 season schedule, as well as season tickets and mini-plan packages, is available now by visiting www.YoungstownPhantoms.com. Ticket packages can also be purchased by calling (330) 747-PUCK.
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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