EVANSVILLE, Indiana – After erasing one goal deficits on three different occasions, the Evansville IceMen (17-26-1-3) ultimately prevailed over the Cincinnati Cyclones in a shootout by a 5-4 final score in front of 5,751 at Ford Center on Friday night.
Right off of the opening face-off, Andrew Conboy dropped the gloves and fought Nathan Moon, who had turtled onto the ice – resulting in a five-minute power play for the IceMen. Seconds after beginning the man advantage, Dylan Clarke notched a power play goal to give his team a 1-0 lead. After killing the remaining penalty time, Josh Shalla found himself open in the Evansville slot; and as Matt Smyth fed him a tape-to-tape pass, Shalla snapped in the game-tying goal at 5:24. Cincinnati pulled ahead at the 9:34 mark when Garrett Wilson angled to the net and pushed home his 19th of the season past Paul Dainton (SOW, 23 saves, 3-6-0-1). Unfortunately, the lead would be short lived as not even a minute later Jake Obermeyer beat Zoltan Hetenyi (SOL, 36 saves, 5-4-0-2) with a shot from the low slot to knot things at two. And with 49 penalty minutes already on the board, the teams went to the first intermission all square.
Cincinnati wasted little time to light the lamp in the second; just 26 seconds in, Dan Eves wrested home his seventh goal of the season to give his team a 3-2 lead. However, like before, the IceMen were able to answer as Nathan Moon cashed in on a rebound at 9:30 during another Evansville power play to even things at three. Then, at the 15:15 mark, Mike Pelech stationed just outside the IceMen goal crease caught a pass from Eves and tapped in his 10th goal of the year – lifting Cincinnati to a 4-3 lead after 40 minutes.
Early in the third, Josh Beaulieu pulled his team back even with the Cyclones by potting a goal at 3:22. However, neither team could find the net in the remaining time in regulation or overtime – so the tilt was decided in a shootout. The first three shooters were denied by both goaltenders. After a round four miss by Garrett Wilson, Dylan Clarke fired a shot past Hetenyi to give his team the lead. After Pacan’s fifth round offering as denied, the IceMen prevailed 5-4.
The Cyclones Radio Network Stars of the Game are as follows:
First Star: Dylan Clarke (Game-ending goal in the shootout for Evansville)
Second Star: Josh Beaulieu (1 goal for Evansville)
Third Star: Daniel Tetrault (1 assist for Evansville)
The Cyclones will close out their weekend tomorrow night as they visit the Fort Wayne Komets at 7:30pm. Fans can hear all the action from Memorial Coliseum on the Cyclones Radio Network (America One, CyclonesHockey.com) starting at 7:10pm.
The Cyclones will return to the ice at U.S. Bank Arena on Tuesday, February 12 when they welcome in the Fort Wayne Komets at 7:30pm.