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Ice living like a cat with nine lives

by Mike Wallin
March 27, 2004 - Central Hockey League (CHL) - Indianapolis Ice

Somehow, someway, the Indianapolis Ice are living for at least another day. Trailing two games to none in the best-of-five series, Indianapolis won a thrilling Central Hockey League playoff game three, 4-3, over the Bossier-Shreveport Mudbugs.

With just over eleven minutes remaining in the third period it appeared that the Ice were heading for the golf course instead of a Game Four. Dan Wildfong had given the visiting Mudbugs a 3-1 lead and thoughts of a Bossier-Shreveport sweep of the playoff series ran through the Pepsi Coliseum. The Ice however, did not give into the temptation of setting tee-times for Sunday morning.

Bernie John scored his second of the night and over a minute later Ryan Carter lifted the 4,868 Pepsi Coliseum faithful out of their seats with an electrifying shorthanded score to knot the game at three.

“When I saw their point man try and dump it into our zone and Mario stole it, I just took off towards the center face-off circle,” said Carter. “Mario fed me and I was all alone. From there it was simply don’t screw up.”

Carter skated in alone on Mudbug netminder Ken Carroll, went to his backhand move and tucked the puck into the net.

With the contest now tied, the Ice continued their frenzied pace. Jared Dumba finished the amazing, but true, comeback minutes later. David Gilmore fed the Ice winger with a perfect tape-to-tape pass and Dumba finished the play like goal scores should.

“All I had to do was beat one defenseman and Gillie fed me a great pass,” said Dumba. “After watching Ryan’s breakaway goal, I knew I better do something different so I ripped a wrist shot and fortunately it proved to be the right move.”

The game started out with Indy battling the whistle of referee Tom Sterns. The Ice sustained six minor penalties during a midway stretch of the first period. Sterns sent Indy defenseman Mario Doyon to the penalty box for four minutes at the 7:09 mark and it wasn’t until Nate Elliott came out of the box at the 14:59 mark that Indianapolis was able to play five-on-five hockey. During the almost eight minutes of play, Sterns assessed a total of six minor penalties for twelve minutes, all against Indy. Bossier-Shreveport bombed 18 shots against netminder Jeff Sanger, although only Dan Wildfong was able to light the lamp.

Trailing just 1-0 after twenty-minutes, Indianapolis had to of felt fortunate. The Ice took advantage of their strong first period penalty kill by tying the game with five minutes in the second period on a Bernie John goal. Bossier-Shreveport stormed right back, scoring the games next two goals.

Netminder Jeff Sanger came up big when needed, turning aside 32 Mudbug shots. Ken Carroll, who has started all three games in the series, stopped 27 Ice shots.

Game Four of the best-of-five series takes place at 5:00 pm this afternoon at the Pepsi Coliseum. Should the Ice win, a deciding Game Five would be Tuesday night in Bossier-Shreveport

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