Bakersfield Takes 2-1 Series Lead with 5-2 Victory over Eagles
BAKERSFIELD, CA. - Bakersfield forward Evan Polei notched two goals and an assist, while defenseman Evan Bouchard netted a goal and two assists, as the Condors defeated the Colorado Eagles 5-2 in Game Three of their best-of-five series on Tuesday. Anton Lindholm and Sheldon Dries each scored a goal in the losing effort, as goaltender Pavel Francouz suffered the loss in net, making 36 saves on 41 shots.
The Condors struck first on the evening, as defenseman Ryan Stanton fired a shot from the right point that would deflect off an Eagles penalty killer and past Francouz. The goal would put Bakersfield on top 1-0 at the 10:20 mark of the first period, as the Condors would go on to out shoot the Eagles 17-1 in the opening 20 minutes.
Still trailing 1-0 as the two teams began the second period, Colorado's deficit would grow when forward Joe Gambardella collected a pass from the end wall and popped a shot from the top of the crease into the back of the net to give the Condors a 2-0 lead at the 5:34 mark of the period.
The hole would get even deeper when Polei stationed himself on top of the crease and deflected a shot past Francouz to give Bakersfield a 3-0 advantage with 12:46 left to play in the second period.
The Eagles would finally strike back 16 seconds later when Mark Alt snapped a pass into the low slot that Lindolm would tip past Condors goalie Shane Starrett to trim Bakersfield's lead to 3-1.
The Condors would light the lamp exactly three minutes later when Bouchard fired a wrister from the blue line that would weave its way through traffic and into the back of the net to put Bakersfield on top 4-1 at the 10:30 mark of the middle frame.
The scoring would continue when Polei tracked down a rebound in the slot and skated to the side of the crease before firing the puck home to give the Condors a 5-1 lead with 2:18 left in the second stanza.
With only 14 seconds left in the period, Colorado would dump the puck into the zone and it would take an odd bounce from the corner into the crease where forward Sheldon Dries would push it across the goal line to cut Bakersfield's advantage to 5-2.
The third period would see the Eagles outshoot the Condors 8-6, but Starrett and Francouz would not allow another goal and Bakersfield would hold on for the 5-2 victory. The Eagles finished the night going 0-for-4 on the power play, while the Condors scored one goal on four opportunities on the man-advantage. Bakersfield outshot Colorado 41-18 in the contest.
The Eagles return to action when they take on the Bakersfield Condors in Game Four on Saturday, April 27th at 8:00pm MT.
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