Steelheads' offensive outburst forces Game 7
Boise, ID - Shane Hanna scored the first two playoff goals of his professional career as part of a six-goal Idaho outburst on Tuesday night at CenturyLink Arena, as the Steelheads skated past the Allen Americans for a 6-3 win in Game 6 of the Mountain Division Semifinals. Idaho has erased a 3-0 series deficit with three straight wins and forced a decisive Game 7 on Wednesday night in Boise.
Hanna opened the scoring early in the first period, the first time in the series the Steelheads had struck first. The Americans would tie the score twice in the opening frame, but Cole Ully's late first period goal would put Idaho in front for good.
Hanna beat Jake Paterson to give the Steelheads a 1-0 lead at 3:02 of the first period, creeping down from the left point and wiring a wrist shot up over Paterson's shoulder for his first professional playoff goal. Hanna would score again at 8:58 of the second period to make it 5-2 Steelheads, finishing a rebound after Max French stuffed the puck to the front of the Allen net.
The Americans answered Hanna's opening tally with Joel Chouinard's first goal of the series at 8:44, a backhander over Philippe Desrosiers' glove. Just 2:25 after the Chouinard goal, Joe Faust put the Steelheads back in front just six second [AJ White, 4/24; Creative Expressions Photography] into a power play, after the Americans had been called for too many men on the ice. Faust's right point blast past Paterson was his first goal since January 19th and gave Idaho a 2-1 lead.
The Americans tied the score again on David Makowski's fourth of the series, a shot from the left circle off an Idaho turnover at 15:47 of the first period. That tied score was again short-lived, as Ully put the Steelheads back in front at 18:39 on a net-front tap-in off a feed from French, Ully's first pro playoff goal.
The Steelheads carried a power play into the second period and would go up two men after Zach Pochiro hauled down Jefferson Dahl. The Steelheads would convert on the 5-on-3 with French's shot from the bottom of the left-wing circle at 1:28, his third power play goal of the series and his second 5-on-3 goal in as many games to make it 4-2.
French nearly had another goal in the second period when he was awarded a penalty shot, but his attempt rang the crossbar behind Paterson.
AJ White and Spencer Asuchak traded goals late in the third, with White netting his first pro playoff goal at 16:23 and Asuchak putting home a rebound 30 seconds later for his first of the series.
Desrosiers stopped 33 of 36 shots, and was at his best in the second period during 1:03 of 5-on-3 power play time for the Americans. Desrosiers did not allow a goal, making several stops in close on Asuchak and Alex Guptill.
With the win, the Steelheads became only the fourth team in ECHL history to overcome a 3-0 series deficit to force a Game 7. Only one of those teams, the 2010 Cincinnati Cyclones, has won the series.
The Steelheads and Americans went seven games in their only other post-season meeting, a series won by the Americans in 2016.
Game 7 of the Mountain Division Semifinals is Wednesday night, with puck-drop scheduled for 7:10pm MT. The game will be available on 1350AM KTIK and seen on Cable One and ECHLTV.
STEELHEADS STATS: Goals: Hanna (1,2), Faust (1), Ully (1), French (3), White (1) Philippe Desrosiers: 33 saves on 36 shots Power Play: 2-for-8 Penalty Kill: 5-for-5
CENTURYLINK THREE STARS OF THE GAME
1. Shane Hanna IDH
2. Cole Ully IDH
3. Max French IDH
COORS LIGHT OFFENSIVE PLAYER OF THE GAME Shane Hanna: Two goals, 5 shots, plus-3
PLAY OF THE GAME: Max French's 5-on-3 power play goal early in the second period was his second such goal in as many games and the eventual game-winner. The Americans again sought to take away Justin Parizek's shooting lanes on the power play, so Parizek fed a pass to French at the bottom of the left circle, a sharper angle than his goal in Game 5. French hammered the puck off the side of Jake Paterson and in, as the Steelheads took advantage of the opportunity and widened their lead.
Images from this story
AJ White of the Idaho Steelheads celebrates a goal
(Creative Expressions Photography)
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ECHL Stories from April 25, 2018
- Steelheads: Game Day Storylines - Game 7, Mountain Division Semifinals - Idaho Steelheads
- Americans Battle Idaho in Game 7 Tonight - Allen Americans
- Komets to Tangle with Walleye in Central Division Finals - Fort Wayne Komets
- Ryan Cruthers Named Head Coach of USHL's Chicago Steel - Reading Royals
- 17 Player Takeaways from 2017-18 - Reading Royals
- Steelheads' offensive outburst forces Game 7 - Idaho Steelheads
- Game 7 Needed - Allen Americans
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