ANCHORAGE, AK — A valiant third period effort was not enough to overcome the first 40 minutes of play as the Rapid City Rush continued their slide, falling 6-3 in the Alaska Aces home opener last night.
Yet again the opponents get on the board first against the Rush when the Aces’ Vladimir Nikiforov buried the three-inch piece of rubber past Rush netminder Charlie Grant at 9:13 of the opening frame. The Aces would double their lead less than three minutes later Ben Lake slipped the rebound shot into the net at 12:03.
The bleeding continued into the middle frame when Peter Sivak fired a hard shot by Grant just 3:24 into the period. Stephen Perfetto got in on the action sent another hard angle shot by Grant at 8:43 allowing the Aces to further pull away. Sivak netted his second tally of the night with 6:18 left in the period when he beat Grant glove side and putting the Aces up 5-0 and still another 20 minutes left to play.
Kent Patterson would come in and take over between the pipes to start the 3rd period.
The Aces would score their final tally of the night just 1:10 into the final frame on a goal by Tim Coffman to give the home team a 6-0 advantage.
Rapid City would not be denied from getting on the stat sheet, however, as they did net three goals before the final horn sounded.
Lindsay Sparks extended his scoring streak to five games when he scored on the power play at 9:49. Brendan Walker followed up with a powerplay goal of his own at 10:49. Lindsay Sparks capped off the night with his second goal with 1:09 left in the game when Rapid City took a 2-on-1 advantage to the net and Sparks sent the rebound off Ryan Walters past Aces netminder Michael Garteig to bring the boys from the Black Hills within a 6-3 deficit.
Michael Garteig takes the win, stopping 18-of-21 shots on the night. Charlie Grant suffers the loss, stopping 25-of-30 shots. Kent Patterson stopped 5-of-6 shots he faced during the 3rd period.
These two teams will square off again tonight at Sullivan Arena with puck drop scheduled for 9:15pm MT.