RAPID CITY, SD — A total team effort propelled the Rapid City Rush to bounce back against the Colorado Eagles to claim the weekend series after recording a 5-0 victory Sunday afternoon.
Anthony Collins recorded his fifth goal of the season at 10:27 of the opening frame to put the Rush up 1-0. Collins was able to take a Brayden Lowe rebound and pocket it by Eagles netminder Clarke Saunders.
Rapid City would pick up a pair of goals in the middle frame to keep the pressure on their division rivals.
The first came from Michael Young at 8:31, just as the Rush powerplay expired, who rifled a shot to double Rapid City’s lead. Mark Cooper would score his seventh goal of the season at 18:56 of the 2nd period as he fired a frozen rope by Saunders for the 3-0 advantage heading into the 2nd intermission.
Keeping their foot on the gas Rapid City continued its offensive pressure on Colorado, even though the Eagles did barely out-shoot the Rush 12-to-11 in the final twenty minutes.
Ryan Walters pocketed his 17th goal on the season at 12:33 of the 3rd period when he took advantage of a 5-on-3 powerplay opportunity and sent the puck screaming by Saunders for the 4-0 lead. Cooper added a second goal on the night, and 8th for the season, with 4:06 left to play to cap off the scoring by the home team for the 5-0 final.
Marek Langhamer continued his dominance between the pipes as he stopped all 31 shots he faced in the win and is 5-0-0 on the season with Rapid City. Clarke Saunders takes the loss stopping 32-of-37 shots faced on the afternoon.
The Rush did gain a crucial four points out of a possible six in this weekend series to help them inch closer in the Crystal Cup series against Colorado.
Rapid City now hits the road for their next six games and will not return to the Rushmore Plaza Civic Center until February 8th. Their next game is against the Indy Fuel on Friday, January 27th with puck drop scheduled for 5:35pm MT.