SUNDOGS FALL TO EAGLES 7-5 IN POWER PLAY BATTLE
Teams Combine for Ten Power Play Goals
PRESCOTT VALLEY, Ariz. – The Arizona Sundogs closed out a season-long seven-game road trip against the Colorado Eagles on Saturday night at the Budweiser Events Center in Loveland, Colorado. In a display of power play prowess, Colorado and Arizona combined for 10 goals with the man advantage, doing so for the first time since a 2005 contest between the Amarillo Gorillas and Laredo Bucks. The Eagles however tallied two even-strength goals in the third period, proving to be the difference in the final 7-5 score. Joel Irving collected five points (2g/3a) in the loss.
Colorado/Arizona Box Score
The first period Saturday night would be a showcase of each team’s power play as the Sundogs and Eagles combined for four man advantage tallies, skating to a 2-2 tie heading into the first intermission. Visiting Arizona struck first while on a 5-on-3 power play to take an early 1-0 lead. Veteran defenseman Chris Bartolone collected a cross-ice pass from Joel Irving and fired a high slap shot over the glove of Colorado netminder Andrew Penner 6:08 into the contest. Jon Landry also assisted on the play for his 16th power play point of the season. The Eagles responded with power play goals separated by just 38 seconds, turning a one-goal deficit into a 2-1 lead. Forward Steve Haddon pulled his club even at 1-1, redirecting an Erik Adams shot past Sundogs goaltender Marco Emond just past the period’s midway point. Greg Pankewicz was also credited with an assist on Colorado’s first. Adams and Pankewicz combined again less than a minute later for their second points of the night to give their club its first lead of the game. This time it was Adams getting his stick on a Pankewicz shot for his fifth of the season. Arizona responded with 3:32 to play in the opening frame as Irving netted his 16th goal of the year and second point of the night from Tyler Liebel and Martin Gascon. Irving collected a pass from Liebel inside the near circle before sending a wrist shot past Penner. Both clubs finished 2-for-4 with the man advantage through the first 20 minutes of play.
The second period looked much like the first as the power play trend continued through 40 minutes of play with both clubs combining for five goals with the man advantage. Colorado however outscored the visiting Sundogs 3-2 in the middle frame to take a 5-4 lead into the second intermission. Arizona’s Irving opened scoring in the period with his second goal and third point of the night 47 seconds in. Irving collected a Liebel rebound and lifted a shot over a sprawled-out Penner to give his team a 3-2 lead. The Eagles’ Ryan Tobler recorded the next two power play goals, reclaiming a one-goal lead. His first came at the 6:48 mark from Kevin Ulanski and Scott Polanski. Tobler registered his 13th power play goal of the season two minutes later from Ulanksi and Schneekloth for a 4-3 Colorado lead. The Sundogs answered with 9:19 to play as rookie forward Adam Perry redirected a Bartolone shot from the point across the goal line for his tenth goal in 13 games with Arizona. Irving notched his second helper and fourth point of the game with an assist on the equalizer. Pankewicz gathered the game’s ninth power play goal less than four minutes later from Konrad Reeder and Schneekloth to close out scoring in the period. The Eagles held a 27-18 advantage in shots heading into the third period.
The Eagles finally broke the power play goal streak with two even-strength markers in the final period. Ulanksi grabbed his third point of the night from Riley Nelson and Polaski at the 7:50 mark to give his team a two-goal lead. Adam Hogg pushed Colorado’s lead to 7-4 17 seconds later with an unassisted backhand effort while seated on the ice for his fourth of the season. Liebel grabbed his third point and the game’s 10th man advantage tally to pull his club within two with 1:41 to play in regulation from Gascon and Irving.
Appearing in net for the fourth consecutive game, Emond stopped 36 of 43 shots in the loss while Penner turned aside 21 of 26 shots, earning his 11th win of the season. Both teams finished 5-for-12 with the man advantage.