Craft Scores Late, Stars Win 2-1 over Storm
LINCOLN, Neb. - Cole Craft scored 18:30 into the third period, propelling the Lincoln Stars (7-10-1) to a 2-1 victory over the Tri-City Storm (11-8-1) Saturday night at the Ice Box.
Cole O'Hara struck early for the visitors at 5:17, continuing their momentum from Friday night's 5-0 victory in Tri-City. Stanley Cooley was given a five-minute major and a game misconduct for cross-checking at 7:00, putting the Stars on a crucial penalty kill early in the game.
Lincoln was able to kill it off, as well as two more minor penalties, in order to avoid further damage in the opening frame. Aidan McCarthy made 15 saves in the first period of his debut with the Stars, holding off Tri-City until the intermission.
Dominic James tied the game 3:31 into the second period on the power play, potting a loose puck around the crease following a shot from the point by Dalton Norris. James' third goal of the season was assisted by Norris and Zach Urdahl.
Neither team could gain an edge heading into the third period; the score was 1-1 after 40 minutes. Both teams fired five shots on goal in the second.
Both teams hunkered down in the third period and prevented high-octane scoring chances as the game looked like it was headed for overtime. Carter Mazur appeared to give Tri-City the lead with under two minutes to go following a wraparound, but officials held up the initial call of no goal.
On the next shift, Craft re-directed a pass from Clay Hanus through the legs of Scott at 18:30 of the third period. The Lake Superior State commit's fourth goal of the season was the game-winner as the Stars held on in the dying moments despite Tri-City throwing out six attackers. Norris picked up the secondary assist on the goal for his second helper of the night.
McCarthy secured his first win in his first start with the Stars, turning aside 27 shots. Scott allowed two goals on 14 shots. Lincoln won the special teams battle, scoring once on four power-play opportunities while killing four Tri-City chances with the man-advantage.
The Stars get set for a three-game homestand at the Ice Box, beginning on Friday night against the Sioux City Stampede at 7:05 p.m.
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