MOLINE, IL — For the first time since March 29, 2015, the Quad City Mallards earned two points against the Missouri Mavericks. But, barely over 1,700 fans were in attendance at the iWireless Center to witness the feat. Though the Chicago Cubs-Cleveland Indians game was shown within the game video on the jumbotron, I’m sure many people chose to stay at home to watch history.
The top-scoring line of Alex Petan, Sam Warning, and Justin Kovacs formed the starting forward line, but they’re not who I want to focus on tonight. Brady Brassart, Nathan Todd, Pavel Jenys, Jace Coyle, and Donnie Harris seemed almost psychic during some of their shifts together. One would drop the pass back and I’d think it was a blind pass that was about to be intercepted, and one of the others seemed to fill the hole immediately and have the puck. Maybe other lines were doing the same thing, but it stuck out at me with that line. Harris also seemed to have a few great — saves isn’t the right word — keeps on the blueline to keep the puck onside in the Mavericks’ zone.
The Mallards were putting on a shooting clinic against the Mavericks, outshooting them 15-6 through 20 minutes. Both Adam Vay and Eamon McAdam stood strong during the first period, McAdam standing on his head for much of the game.
With 30 seconds left in the first period, Connor Brown and Tyler Elbrecht dropped the gloves. I’d call the bout a draw, as neither one seemed particularly better than the other; they both got some good punches in, and Elbrecht pulled Brown to the ice, but it was a close tilt if there was a winner.
The second period began with some fireworks, Radoslav Illo boarding Kevin Gibson just 16 seconds after the puck dropped again. Then, the Mallards opened the scoring at 37 seconds of the second. Coyle took a shot from just inside the Mavericks’ zone; Warning then redirected it to find the back of the net. Mike Monfredo also earned an assist on that goal. Twenty seconds later, Reed Seckel high-sticked Brassart, giving the Mallards another powerplay. That power play was uneventful; however, as soon as Seckel exited the box Brassart entered for hooking.
Roughly halfway through the game Illo tied the score with help from Dane Fox and Bryce Aneloski. The puck went in high glove side of Vay, touching the twine in the corner and disturbing the water bottle. The Mallards seemed to have lost their head a bit before the Missouri goal, but found it again after the Maverick marker.
Harris took exception to Seckel for some reason later in the sandwich stanza, jawing at him before beginning to punch him. Harris definitely got the upper hand, as Seckel was unable to deliver any blows. Harris was given a double minor for roughing to Seckel’s two minutes for the same offense; Connor Brown served the extra two.
At the 11:20 mark of the final period, Petan put the Mallards back in the lead after a turnover just outside the Mavericks’ zone. He streaked into the zone, sending the puck ringing off the crossbar and into the net.
The Mavericks would mount a charge in the final 10 minutes of the game, but Adam Vay stood strong and shut the door.
After the final horn sounded, Rocco Carzo and Dane Fox seemed to take exception to the Mallards’ victory, jawing at the players and requiring two of the officials to stop them from getting in the faces of the Mallards.
The Mallards will face the red-hot Tulsa Oilers on Saturday at 7:05 CST.
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