Arizona Keeps Playoff Chances Alive With 4-3 Shootout Win
PRESCOTT VALLEY, Ariz. - Kicking off their final road trip of the regular season and needing a win to keep their slim playoff hopes alive, the Arizona Sundogs topped the Corpus Christi IceRays 4-3 in a shootout Tuesday night at the AmericanBank Center.
Skating in his 13th consecutive start, Doug Groenestege turned aside 39 of 42 shots through 65 minutes of play and six IceRays players in the seven-round shootout to improve to 8-0 this season in contests that go past overtime.
Steve Potvin collected the eventual game-winner in the shootout's seventh round, slipping a backhand effort five-hole through IceRays netminder Kevin Beech before Groenestege denied defenseman Jesse Dudas at the other end.
Winners of seven of its last nine road games, Arizona climbs three games above.500 (15-12-3) away from Tim's Toyota Center.
Having scored just once in their last 33 man-advantage chances coming into the game, the Sundogs converted twice on four power-play chances Tuesday en route to the 4-3 win.
Jason Visser opened scoring late in the opening frame on the Sundogs' first power-play opportunity of the contest, chipping a backhand shot past Beech at the left post at the 18:27 mark.
Arizona held its 1-0 lead through the first 40 minutes of play but Corpus Christi would tally two goals in the first eight minutes to take a 2-1 lead.
Groenestege made back-to-back saves on Chris Richards from the ice three minutes into the final frame but leading rookie scorer Ryan Garbutt jumped on the loose puck and lifted the rebound into the back of the net as Arizona failed to clear the crease, tying the game at one at 3:51.
Garbutt nearly grabbed his second of the game on a breakaway with 13 minutes to play but Groenestege steered the shot aside. But less than a minute later Chad Woollard redirected a Chad Costello rink-wide pass behind the Arizona goaltender for his league-leading 38th goal of the season.
Trailing for the first time in the contest, Arizona responded with a pair of tallies 1:17 apart from Adam Smyth and Rob Lehtinen to reclaim a one-goal lead.
Smyth picked up his third of the season and first in a Sundogs uniform two seconds shy of the period's halfway mark for the team's second man-advantage goal of the game before Lehtinen blasted a shot from the near point through traffic and past a screened Beech just over a minute later.
Woollard picked up his second of the game at 13:37 for his team's lone power play goal on eight chances on the night, redirecting a Kyle Peto shot from inside the blue line over Groenestege knotting the score at three.
Kyle Hood, Joey Sides, Marc Belanger and Linus Fagemo all extended their points streak to five games, each tallying an assist in the win.
Arizona (23-30-6) continues its final road trip of the regular season Thursday at 9:30am (Arizona time) against the Rio Grande Valley Killer Bees. Listen live on KDDL 'Cattle Country' 94.3FM, the Official Radio Home of Arizona Sundogs Hockey, and online at www.cattlecountryradio.com.
Electronic box score: http://www.pointstreak.com/prostats/boxscore.html?gameid=1067863
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Central Hockey League Stories from March 9, 2010
- IceRays Gain Point In 4-3 Shootout Loss To Arizona - Corpus Christi IceRays
- Allen Americans Weekly Notes - Allen Americans
- Arizona Keeps Playoff Chances Alive With 4-3 Shootout Win - Arizona Sundogs
- Jackalopes Shut Out Rush With 3-0 Win - Odessa Jackalopes
- Mavericks Recognized In CHL's "Best Of The Best" Poll - Kansas City Mavericks
- Rush Host Fan Appreciation Weekend - Rapid City Rush
- Killer Bees Tabbed In Annual "Best Of The Best Poll" - Rio Grande Valley Killer Bees
- McNulty Nominated For Performance Of The Week - Mississippi RiverKings
- Colt King's Hat Trick Voted CHL Performance of the Week - CHL
- Bucks Teach Ladies Hockey 101 - Laredo Bucks
- Rush Well Represented In CHL's "Best Of The Best" Poll - Rapid City Rush
- Oilers, BOK In Best Of Best - Tulsa Oilers
- Reminder: Thursday Game Moved To Next Week - Bossier-Shreveport Mudbugs
- Arena, Fans Top 2010 Best Of The Best Poll - Wichita Thunder
- Mudbugs Well Represented In Best Of The Best Poll - Bossier-Shreveport Mudbugs
- Bucks Can Inch Closer To Playoffs Wednesday - Laredo Bucks
- Sundogs Recognized In Annual CHL "Best Of The Best" - Arizona Sundogs
- Nelson, Eagles Dominate "Best Of The Best" - Colorado Eagles
- Americans Win Four Best Of The Best Awards - Allen Americans
- RiverKings Among Best Of The Best - Mississippi RiverKings
- Bucks Represented In Best Of The Best Poll - Laredo Bucks
- Gorillas rank among the "Best of the Best" - Amarillo Gorillas
- CHL's Best Of The Best Poll Released - Odessa Jackalopes
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