Mavericks Inch Closer to Postseason Berth with 3-2 Win over Wichita
INDEPENDENCE, Mo. - The Kansas City Mavericks strengthened their postseason positioning with a 3-2 victory over rival Wichita Thunder Friday night in front of a sold out crowd of 5,800 fans at Silverstein Eye Centers Arena. Mavericks forward Joey Sides scored two first period goals en route to the Mavericks 32nd victory of the season. Fresh off of ECHL Player of the Week honors, Mavs forward Greg Betzold also added the game-winning goal in the second period. Their record now stands at 32-23-3-2, with 69 points on the season.
Wichita opened up the scoring on a goal from Jason Salvaggio 5:39 into regulation. Quentin Shore and Ralph Cuddemi assisted on the goal. The Mavericks were quick to respond, with Joey Sides' first goal of the period at the 8:22 mark of the opening period. C.J. Eick and Corey Durocher got the assists on the goal. Sides scored his second goal of the period three minutes, 10 seconds later, once again getting an assist from C.J. Eick. The Mavericks narrowly outshot Wichita, 11-10 in the period.
The Mavericks extended their lead 5:39 into the second period, as Greg Betzold streaked past the Wichita defense to beat Thunder goaltender Stuart Skinner to make the score 3-1. Darian Dziurzynski and Mike Panowyk assisted on the goal. The goal was Betzold's sixth in the last three games.
Kansas City carried their 3-1 lead deep into the third period before Wichita cut the lead in half with 1:03 left in regulation on a goal from Stefan Fournier. Cuddemi and Keoni Texeira assisted on the goal. Wichita's late push was not enough to overcome the deficit and the Mavs skated away with a 3-2 victory.
Kansas City goaltender Nick Schneider finished the evening with 28 saves on 30 shots. Both teams went scoreless on the power play, Kansas City on four attempts and Wichita on three.
The Mavericks wrap up their home stand Saturday against the Tulsa Oilers before hitting the road for an eight-game road trip starting next Tuesday against the South Carolina Stingrays. Faceoff for the Wichita and Tulsa games will be 7:05 p.m. For more information, please visit kcmavericks.com.
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