INDEPENDENCE, MO – The Missouri Mavericks continued to inch closer to being the first ECHL club to clinch a playoff berth Friday night, as they defeated the Indy Fuel in a see-saw affair at Silverstein Eye Centers Arena.
The first 3:30 of the opening period was a preview of how the remainder of the game would play out: a scored by the Mavericks and the Fuel tying the game up quickly thereafter. Bryce Aneloski opened the scoreboard just 2:23 into the frame (assisted by Ross Johnston and Reed Seckel), then the Fuel responded just over a minute later to tie the contest 1-1. Michael Colantone was credited with the goal, assisted by Rhett Bly and Patrick Koudys.
Reed Seckel notched his own tally at 12:30 with the help of Johnston and Andrew Courtney to edge Indy, but the Fuel tied the game once again while in a man-advantage situation at 16:43 when Colantone took his second goal of the night (assisted by Adam Lapsansky and Daniel Ciampini).
Seckel got the Mavericks off to a fast start in the second period with a lamp-lighter just 2:32 after the puck drop. Johnston and David deKastrozza were credited with the assists on Seckel’s fourth goal of the season.
Just as they had twice before, Indy tied the game up shortly after the Mavs took the lead. Adam Lapsansky scored at 3:44 with the help of Anders Franzon and Ciampini.
The scoreboard was locked at 3-3 through majority of the final frame, until the 15:05 mark of the period when defenseman Matt Finn scored the game-winning goal on a Mavericks power-play. Tanner Fritz and Rocco Carzo assisted on Finn’s fifth goal for the season.
Missouri continues to pace the league with 75 points, while the Fuel are percentage points behind Colorado for the eighth and final playoff position in the Western Conference.