Game Day: K-Wings Host Game 5 Saturday Night at Wings Event Center
Kalamazoo, MI- The K-Wings look to extend their first round playoff series past the weekend as they host the Cyclones for Game 5 on Saturday night, trailing in the best of seven series, 3-1.
Central Division Semifinal Game #5
Kalamazoo (1-3-0-0) vs Cincinnati (3-1-0-0)
Listen: 1660 The Fan
Last Time Out:
A back and forth affair saw the K-Wings tie the game up with 4:53 to play in regulation on Friday night before the Cyclones got a power play goal in the final 2:06 to retake the lead, sneaking away with a 4-3 victory. Kalamazoo scored first, getting on the board just 4:42 into the game as Kyle Blaney tucked the puck past Michael Houser for his first goal of the post season. The 1-0 lead would last through the remainder of the first period and into the middle frame. The Cincinnati power play got the visitors on the board as Eric Knodel's point shot snuck past Kulbakov to tie the game at 1-1. Five minutes later another point shot gave the Cyclones a 2-1 lead midway through regulation. Before the period ended the K-Wings tied the game back up courtesy of Jagger Dirk. The defenseman's shot from the left circle beat Houser to even the game once again at 2-2 as the teams headed to the second intermission. In the third period the Cyclones took the lead once again at 3-2, but just like the second the K-Wings answered back With time winding down Dominic Zombo collected a pass in front of the net before slipping it inside the near post to tied the game at 3-3 with just 4:53 to play. In the final minutes of play the Cyclones were presented with a power play and capitalized to retake the lead, this time for good. Alex Wideman's power play goal capped off the scoring, and gave the Cyclones the 4-3 victory, and 3-1 series lead.
Game 5 History:
Kalamazoo heads into Saturday's Game 5 looking to send the series back to Cincinnati down only a single game, with the series at 3-2. Kalamazoo's last Game 5 victory came in North Charleston, SC as the K-Wings used a three-point night from Trent Daavetilla, as well as a two-goal game from Sam Ftorek to top the Stingrays 5-1 in the 2012 Kelly Cup Playoffs. Darryl Bootland and Justin Taylor also added goals in the victory for the K-Wings as they capped off a 4-1 series victory over the Stingrays. Kalamazoo finished that game scoring four power play goals on five chances.
Zombo Strikes Back:
K-Wing forward Dominic Zombo scored on his former team on Friday night equalizing the score at 3-3 late in regulation. Zombo spent two full seasons with the Cyclones and began the 2018-19 season in Cincinnati prior to being traded after appearing in 13 games. Over his time in the Queen City Zombo appeared in 216 games in a Cyclone uniform and three playoff games. The goal on Friday night was Zombo's first career post season goal.
The K-Wings struck first for the third time in the first four games of the playoffs on Friday night. Kyle Blaney netted the opening goal for the K-Wings, becoming the fourth different player to score the opening goal of the night through the four-game series. Four other teams have opened the scoring three times in through the first four playoff games, but only Toledo has scored first in every game so far. The Walleye lead their series with the Fort Wayne Komets 3-1.
Shots, Shots, Shots:
Kalamazoo passed the 35 shot mark for the first time this postseason on Friday night. The K-Wings put 36 shots on Michael Houser, raising their average shot total per game to 29.75. During the regular season the K-Wings averaged just under 31 shots a game at 30.7. The team was successful in the regular season when putting 35 or more shots on goal, as Kalamazoo posted a record of 16-5-0-0. Kalamazoo is allowing the fifth fewest shots on goal in the playoffs right now, limiting Cincinnati to 31 shots on goal.
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