Nolan and Jardine's heroics lift Mavs to second straight postseason
INDEPENDENCE, Missouri - The Missouri Mavericks punched their ticket to the 2011 CHL Playoffs with a 1-0 victory over the Quad City Mallards. Robby Nolan stopped 34 shots for his sixth shutout of the season and Ryan Jardine added the game winner in the third period to send the Mavericks to the playoffs for the second time in their two year existence.
The highlight of the first period was a five-on-three penalty kill by the Mavericks' league leading penalty kill unit. Missouri goaltender Robby Nolan made several spectacular stops during the kill as the Mavericks killed off nearly a minute's worth of a Quad City two-man advantage to keep the 0-0 tie intact. Nolan and David Brown of Quad City took the game over for the first two periods, not allowing a single goal to either team. Brown stopped all 22 shots by Missouri in the first two periods. Nolan was just as impressive, stopping all 20 attempts from the Mallards. But at the end of two periods, it was still knotted up at zeroes.
It seemed like the Mavs and Mallards were headed for overtime after remaining scoreless through 52 minutes of play, but a pass from Cole Ruwe found Ryan Jardine in the slot and Jardine put it behind Brown to put the Mavericks up 1-0. Blake Forsyth was given an assist on the goal as well. Jardine's goal would stand up and the Mavericks would preserve Robby Nolan's sixth shutout of the season.
Nolan stopped all 34 shots by Quad City and was named the first star of the game. David Brown stopped 33 of 34 shots by Missouri. The Mavs and Mallards didn't score any power play goals on the night as the Mavs went zero-for-two and the Mallards went zero-for-three.
The Mavericks travel to Moline, Illinois tomorrow to wrap up this home-and-home series with Quad City. Then on Sunday night, the Mavericks face the Dayton Gems at Hara Arena in Dayton, Ohio. The Mavericks return home on Tuesday evening as they take on the Colorado Eagles in their final meeting of the 2010-11 CHL regular season. Tickets are available for all Mavericks' home games at the Independence Events Center Box Office, by calling (800) 745-3000 or visiting www.TicketMaster.com. Season tickets for the 2011-12 season are on sale now by calling (816) 252-7825.
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