Lincoln Stars

Stars Win Fifth Straight Home Game

November 13, 2022 - United States Hockey League (USHL)
Lincoln Stars News Release

Keaton Peters' eighth goal of the season broke a 2-2 tie in the third period and the Lincoln Stars defeated the Des Moines Buccaneers, 4-2, on Saturday night at the Ice Box.

The Stars (9-3) won their fourth consecutive game and their fifth straight at home with their second win in as many meetings with Des Moines (6-6-1).

"I gotta tip my hat to Des Moines," head coach Rocky Russo said. "They've got a really good club and they execute the way that they want to play really well. They caused a lot of odd man rushes and they got a lot of chances in transition."

Peters' goal came at the 13:51 mark of the third shortly after his shift began. The Stars sustained offensive zone time and were in the midst of a line change when Peters hopped off the bench and scored. Michael Mesic corralled the puck from the far corner and skated all the way up to the middle of the blue line with the puck before dropping a pass off to his right to a flying Peters off the bench. Peters sped past one defender, cut to the net and scored on a backhander to give the Stars the lead for good.

Des Moines had tied the game up earlier in the third period when Jake Vaarwerk deflected Christian Kocsis's shot into the net at 4:21 of the first. It marked the third time in the last two days that the Buccaneers would score game-tying goals in the the period.

The Stars never trailed on Saturday once Tanner Ludtke scored the game's first goal at the 4:25 mark of the first period. The University of Nebraska at Omaha commit sniped a wrist shot top shelf for his sixth goal of the season but Braden Rourke's first of the season at the 8:28 mark tied it up heading into the first intermission.

Boston Buckberger and Mason Marcellus hooked up on one of the Stars' more impressive goals this season to give the Stars the lead after two periods. With a face-off deep in their own zone on the far side the ice Ludtke won the draw back to the corner to Buckberger, who bounced the puck across the ice and off the boards all the way into the Des Moines defensive zone. Marcellus sped past the defense and finessed the puck past goaltender Jan Korec to score his fifth goal of the season.

"That was six years in the making," Russo said. "I had to video it during the intermission and send it to our former assistant coach George Lewis because he and I have been running that play for years and years and we had never been able to hit it. I made a little adjustment on where we placed (Marcellus). Those are really satisfying as a coach when you see the guys execute something you draw on the board and I couldn't have been happier for them for a big goal."

Jack Larrigan added an empty-net goal in the final minute for his second of the season and his second goal in the last three games.

Saturday's win guarantees that the Stars will end this week with at worst a share of first place in the Western Conference. Lincoln is idle on Sunday but Fargo wraps up its road trip at Omaha and with a win can move into a tie with the Stars for first in the West at 18 points apiece.

The Stars' four consecutive wins match a season-high and they will look to extend that streak next weekend as they are on the road at the Waterloo Black Hawks beginning with a 7:05 p.m. game on Friday. Lincoln's next home game is on Nov. 23 against the Tri-City Storm.

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