MOLINE, IL – The Quad City Mallards broke their six-game losing streak in a decisive manner, shutting out the Rapid City Rush 4-0 infront of a small but exuberant crowd.
Former Mallard Benjamin Dieude-Fauvel made an unremarkable return to the iWireless Center, chipping in with just one shot on goal through the night.
At 3:54 of the first period, Kevin Henderson sent the puck from the right side of Sam Marotta to where Matt Carey was waiting on the right dot. Carey hammered the puck to the back of the net, lighting the lamp at home for the first time at home since January 15.
The Rush believed they had scored a goal for a brief moment at 8:17, but it was immediately waived off for being batted in with a high stick. That was one of the few quality chances the visiting team had, and the only one to have possibly slipped past Steve Michalek.
Guillaume Gelinas streaked into the offensive zone and took a shot at 13:55, sending a rebound to Miles Koules who found twine. The Mallards had a 2-0 lead. That was not the first time the Mallards had led 2-0 during the past few games, and the team’s ability to hold that lead was uncertain at the time.
During the second period, the Mallards got off to a quick start again. Matt Neal battled in the stick corner, coming away with the puck and sending it to Raphael Bussieres. Bussieres netted a goal just 3:33 into the second period.
An unsuccessful penalty shot was attempted by Mikhail Stefanovich at 4:05, Michalek making the save as he fell on the ice.
At 7:31 of the final period Daniel O’Donoghue was ejected for unsportsmanlike conduct after disputing a tripping call which was placed on Lindsay Sparks’ shoulders. During the ensuing 5-on-3 powerplay for the Mallards, Mike Monfredo scored from Gelinas and Brady Brassart. Minutes later, Austin Coldwell was assessed a double minor for high-sticking, giving the Rush a four minute powerplay to attempt to get on the board.
Michalek had a great night in net, making 37 saves on his way to his second career shut-out. His first shut-out was on January 10 against the Fort Wayne Komets.
The Mallards will face the Rush again on Friday in another $1 Beer/ $1 Hot Dog Night presented by 97X.