Utah Strikes Late on Power Play to Spoil New Year's Day for Rush
(WEST VALLEY CITY, UT) - Avery Peterson scored twice and Tyler Coulter tied the game for the Rapid City Rush in the third period, but a power play goal from Ian Scheid with 4:59 left in the game was the difference in giving the Utah Grizzlies a 4-3 win on New Year's Day. The loss serves as the fifth in a row for the Rush, with three of those coming against Utah.
Both teams left the first period deadlocked at 1-1. Utah's Charlie Gerard got this started 1:20 into the action after a neutral zone interception turned into a two-on-one in-zone. Gerard received a Pat Cannone pass and fired a shot by Rush net-minder Dave Tendeck to give the Grizzlies a 1-0 lead (Cannone and Diego Cuglietta assisted). Moments later, Avery Peterson's first of a pair of goals on the night brought the game level heading into the break. With 6:54 remaining in the period, Peterson collected a Brenna Saulnier east-west pass from behind the net and rifled a one-timer past Utah goalie Peyton Jones to square the game at 1-1 (Saulnier and Garrett Klotz assisted).
The rivals came into the second tied, and left it tied again, yet managed to add to their respective scores. Avery Peterson struck again to give the Rush their first lead of the week's series early in the second frame. With 2:06 gone by, Ian Edmondson sent a blue line shot through traffic that was initially stopped by Jones, but produced a rebound that Peterson buried to give the Rush a 2-1 lead (Edmondson and Jack Suter assisted). However, Utah struck back at the midway point of the game to even the score once again. With 9:40 left in the second, Matt Abt deflected a Rush pass to Christian Horn in the neutral zone, and sprung him up the ice one-on-one with the Rush defense. The former Rush forward rifled a shot that appeared to tip off the glove of Tendeck and over his shoulder, squaring the game at 2-2 (Abt had the lone assist).
Special teams was the story of the third period, with not a single goal coming in even strength play. On the fourth Rush power play of the game, goals were exchanged within a minute, beginning with Jack Jenkins' shorthanded score. Just 4:50 into the final frame, a blue line turnover created a two-on-one shorthanded break down the ice for Jenkins and company. Jenkins feigned a pass, and instead zipped a shot through Tendeck's legs to put Utah back on top at 3-2 (Tanner Jago and Peyton Jones assisted). Despite the shorthanded goal, the Rush counterpunched 35 seconds later on the same power play when Tyler Coulter busted into the Utah zone, by the defense, and tucked the puck underneath Jones to tie the game back at 3-3 at 5:25 (Mark Auk and Dave Tendeck assisted). Staying on the theme of special teams, the Grizzlies stuck the dagger on their final power play of the game. Previously 0/3 coming into the last man-advantage, Ian Scheid rifled home the game-winner from the blue line with net-front traffic. The puck found its way past Tendeck with 4:59 left in the game, vaulting the Grizzlies to a 4-3 lead (Pat Cannone and Joe Wegwerth assisted). The Rush earned a power play in the final moments of the game, and despite a two-man advantage with the power play combined with the extra-attacker, couldn't muster a tying goal, falling for a fifth straight game.
Dave Tendeck suffered the loss, stopping 21 of 25 shots on net (0-2-0-0).
The Rush conclude their "three-in-three" series against the Grizzlies tomorrow night before beginning an 8-game home stand. Saturday's finale on January 2nd is slated for 7:10 p.m. MDT puck drops at the Maverik Center.
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