Stampede Rally to Top Fargo in OT
Fargo, ND-Nolan Walker's blast 2:38 into overtime lifted the Sioux Falls Stampede to a 3-2, come-from-behind, victory over the Fargo Force Friday night at Scheels Arena. The Herd rallied from a 2-0 deficit to top the Herd and improve to a perfect 4-0-0 against the Force this season with all four games taking place in Fargo. Artem Ivanyuzhenkov and Kirill Panyukov scored goals in regulation for the Herd while Jaxson Stauber stopped 28 of 30 shots to earn his fourth win of the season in goal. The win improved the Herd's record to 13-8-6 on the year and kept them in sole possession of third place in the Western Conference, just three points behind first place Fargo.
After a scoreless first period the Force would grab the first goal of the game 5:01 into the second period with a shorthanded goal from William Fallstrom. The Stampede turned the puck over in the neutral zone and Fallstrom picked up the puck and skated inside the right circle where he blasted a shot into the upper left-hand corner of the net to make it a 1-0 game. It remained that way until the 12:55 mark when Fargo doubled their lead on a blast from the left point from Brian Hurley who sent the puck perfectly into the upper right-hand corner of the goal for a 2-0 advantage. The Stampede went on a 5-on-3 late on the period and they cashed in. Artem Ivanyuzhenkov wristed a shot that was stopped by Fargo goaltender Straus Mann and then deflected on a couple of players back into the right circle for Ivanyuzhenkov who wristed the puck from his knees into the back of the net to make it a 2-1 game. The Force outshot the Herd 14-12 in the period and headed into third on the man advantage.
The Herd were able to kill off the penalty and kept it a one-goal game. Sioux Falls went on a power play late in the period with a chance to tie it, but were unable to convert and still trailed by a goal with three minutes to go. The Stampede wouldn't go down without a fight and converted at 17:06 when Reid Stefanson took a pass from Jack St. Ivany and blasted a shot towards the net that was deflected in by Kirill Panyukov to tie the game 2-2. Fargo put some heavy pressure on in the final two minutes, but the Herd held them off and forced overtime.
In the extra session the Stampede were awarded a power play 1:14 in when Grant Hebert was flagged for tripping. That put the Herd on a 4-on-3 advantage and they would not let this opportunity get away from them. Jack St. Ivany held the puck in the high slot before blasting a shot on net that was stopped by Mann, but the rebound bounced into the right circle where Nolan Walker skated in and blasted the puck into the back of the net to give the Stampede the victory.
Sioux Falls outshot the Force 4-0 in overtime, but Fargo had the edge overall 30-29. The Stampede finished the night 2-for-7 on the power play while Fargo was 0-for-4.
The Herd return home on Sunday for a special New Year's Eve tilt against Fargo at 6:05 PM. Doors open at 5 PM and the first 1,000 fans through the gates will receive a free noisemaker to help ring in the New Year. Bring your skates to the game for a post-game skating party with the players on the PREMEIR Center ice right after the conclusion of the game. Several players will be available off the ice for non-skating fans as well. Tickets are available through Ticketmaster or the KEOLAND Box Office at the PREMIER Center.
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