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Cyclones fall in OT, 4-3
CINCINNATI, Ohio (WKRC) -- An overtime goal by defenseman Joe Sova capped off a late game rally as the Kalamazoo Wings (41-22-2-5) defeated the Cyclones (39-22-3-4) by a 4-3 final score in front of 2,031 U.S. Bank Arena on Wednesday night. With his goal in the third period, Josh Shalla extended his point streak to six straight games while Byron Froese turned in another impressive two-point performance in the loss. The Cyclones earned a point in the Eastern Conference standings as they continue their fight for home ice advantage in the Kelly Cup playoffs.
Though the tilt kicked off with evenly matched play from both teams, it was the Wings that struck first. With defenseman Mike Dalhuisen caught up along the boards, former Cyclone David Pacan capitalized on the situation and notched his 13th goal of the season between the legs of Rob Madore (L, 17 saves, 17-12-1-0) at 11:40. Cincinnati successfully killed a penalty to end the frame and entered the first intermission outshooting the Wings, 6-4, but trailing by one.
When Froese was called for hooking early in the second stanza, Kalamazoo converted 12 seconds into the power play as Chris Lawrence recorded his 15th of the season at 1:45. When two Wings were called for penalties, the Cyclones were awarded with more than a minute of five-on-three hockey, but were unable to find the back of the net. The Cincinnati penalty kill unit returned the favor when Kalamazoo failed to score on their own five-on-three opportunity. The Cyclones strong defensive play shifted momentum in their favor and Froese drew his team within one as he tipped in his 11th goal of the season with 13 seconds remaining in the period.
The Cyclones rode that momentum into the final frame as Zach Budish streaked down the right side and sniped the equalizer over the shoulder of net minder Jordan Binnington (W, 15 saves, 22-13-1-1) just 17 seconds into the period. When Pacan was given a double minor for high-sticking, Josh Shalla made the Wings pay with a blistering shot that gave the Cyclones their first lead of the night at 8:45. Less than two minutes later, however, the Wings knotted the game at three with a power play goal of their own when Sam Ftorek buried a rebound at 10:14.
Both teams were held scoreless for the remainder of the frame and the tilt headed to overtime. The bonus session was brief, however, as Sova scored the game-winning tally at 2:17.
Its definitely a tough pill to swallow at the end, said alternate captain Dan Eves. Big playoff implications with the seeding and everything. Its just the way the game played out. It seemed like we had them, but we just kind of let it slip awayTheyve got a good squad over there. It was a good, hard game with a playoff atmosphere.
Its nice to have a playoff spot clinched already, he added. But were fighting for a division title and we want to get as high of a seed as we can and hopefully get home ice for the playoffs here.
Image and information provided by the Cincinnati Cyclones