RAPID CITY, SD — A thrilling back-and-forth contest went to the visitors Wednesday night, as the Allen Americans take a 5-4 victory in the closing seconds of overtime against the Rapid City Rush.
Allen would light the lamp first off a deflection by Spencer Asuchak that snuck by Rush netminder Adam Morrison at 7:39 with the assist going to David Makowski and Chad Costello. They would hold on to that 1-0 advantage through most of the first period until the 18:59 mark. Logan Nelson squared the game up at 1-1 when he ripped a shot from between the hash marks and by Americans netminder Jamie Murray for his fifth goal of the season.
Costello would put Allen back on top shortly after the Rush killed part of a 5-on-3 opportunity but Mike Monfredo was still serving time for a delay of game minor. The goal came at 4:17 of the middle frame and put the visitors back on top 2-1.
Rapid City would get two quick strikes a few minutes later to give them their first lead of the game.
Mark Cooper scored his first of two goals on the evening at 7:02 to knot the game at 2. Nicholas Miglio put the Rush on top at 7:45 when he secured a turnover and blasted the puck immediately back toward the net for the home team’s first lead of the night.
Allen’s depth allowed them to keep the pressure on the boys from the Black Hills.
Asuchak gets the visitor’s their second powerplay goal of the night at 14:01 to square the game up again at 3-3 and take some of the air out of Rapid City’s sails. But, Cooper would respond a few minutes later with his second goal of the night, taking a sharp angle shot top-shelf to put Rapid City back on top 4-3 with 2:18 left in the middle frame.
Just twenty minutes separated Rapid City from a crucial two points against the defending Kelly Cup Champs.
Early in the final frame, though, Allen would square the game up yet again. Jake Marchment secured the faceoff to Randy Cure who took the quick shot by Morrison at 2:40 to make it a 4-4 contest. The goal was Cure’s first professional goal of his career.
Both offenses were held in check for the rest of regulation to send this contest into overtime.
Rapid City had several good scoring opportunities but Eric Roy was able to get a step on Cooper and drive the puck by Morrison for the game-winner for the Americans with just 30.3 seconds remaining.
Riley Gill is credited for the win for the Americans, stopping all 11 shots faced with Jamie Murray stopping 18-of-22 shots faced during his 40 minutes of play. Adam Morrison takes the loss stopping 25-of-30 shots faced on the night.
Both teams will square off in Game two of this three-game series. Friday is the 9th Annual “Pink at the Rink” contest for the Rush with puck drop scheduled for 7:05pm MT.