Havoc Win Overtime Thriller to Advance to SPHL Finals
MACON, GEORGIA - Splitting the first two games in the SPHL semifinals, the Huntsville Havoc and Macon Mayhem needed overtime in game three to determine which team's season would come to an end and which would move on to the championship series.
Both clubs were evenly matched, but the Havoc scored late in the third to send it to the extra frame and Peter Sikalis notched his first goal of the playoffs in overtime to send Huntsville on the SPHL finals.
"I'm so proud of this team and its resilience," said Havoc Head Coach Glenn Detulleo. "Being down in a series by a game, and then down late in game three, they never quit and found a way to get it done. Now the focus moves on to the championship series and winning two more games."
Huntsville's Alex Botten set a rough tone early in the game when he was booked for boarding in the first minute. Macon took advantage of the powerplay, scoring two minutes into the game to take the early lead.
At the end of the first period, Macon led 1-0 lead and Huntsville only had two shots on goal. The Havoc made up the shots difference in the second period, peppering Macon goaltender Charlie Finn with 15 shots, but none found the back of the net.
Sy Nutkevtich finally broke through for Huntsville eight minutes into the third period to tie the game.
Later in the third, Havoc Kyle Sharkey was called for hooking as Huntsville was attacking the Mayhem net and Macon once again capitalized on the ensuing powerplay. Jake Trask got his team back out in front with three minutes left.
With a little over a minute remaining, Huntsville pulled starting goalie Keegan Asmundson to put an extra attacker on the ice. Nolan Kaiser came through for the Havoc, scoring with 1:03 left to play to tie the game at two-all and send the game to a sudden-death overtime.
Huntsville keeper Keegan Asmundson stopped 33 of 35 shots, including shutting down Macon in the extra frame. Ten minutes into the sudden-death overtime, defenseman Peter Sikalis shot the puck through traffic and past the Macon netminder, giving Huntsville the 3-2 win.
Earlier in the evening, the Peoria Rivermen completed their sweep of the Knoxville IceBears to advance to the SPHL President's Cup finals against the Huntsville Havoc.
As the higher seed, Peoria will host game one on Wednesday, April 25, in Illinois. Details on how fans can follow the game will be posted to the Havoc web site and social media accounts in the coming days.
Huntsville will host game two on Pharmacy First Ice at the Von Braun Center on Friday, April 27. Be sure to follow the Havoc on social media to be among the first to learn about ticket availability and pricing once it is announced.
If necessary, game three will be back in Peoria on Sunday, April 29.
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Southern Professional Hockey League Stories from April 21, 2018
- SPHL Announces President's Cup Finals Schedule - SPHL
- Havoc Win Overtime Thriller to Advance to SPHL Finals - Huntsville Havoc
- Ice Bears Fall to Rivermen in SPHL Semi-Final - Knoxville Ice Bears
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