RAPID CITY, SD — Despite having a 2-0 lead deep into the 2nd period the Rapid City Rush suffered their 10th straight defeat as the Idaho Steelheads rallied for a 3-2 victory Friday night. The current slump ties a franchise record set in the 2015-16 ECHL season.
It’s been nearly a month since the Rush were the first team on to light the lamp but there was a different fire in the team from the Black Hills. And they made sure to cash in on that energy. Peter Sivak pocketed his third goal of the season at 9:35 of the opening frame when he took the feed Pavel Jenys and fired a one-timer to beat Steelheads’ netminder Philippe Desrosiers for the 1-0 edge.
The Rush would double up their lead at 8:20 of the second period when Jack Walker scored his second goal in as many nights, banging home a rebound attempt and sending the 2,550 fans in attendance tonight into a frenzy. The Steelheads weren’t about to roll over just yet, however, as Henrik Samuelsson put the Steelheads on the board with 2:46 remaining in the middle frame. Samuelsson deflect the puck by Rush netminder Christian Frey which brought new life to the visiting team by cutting their deficit in half.
Idaho kept the pressure on Rapid City deep into the 3rd period which finally paid off as they neared the halfway point. Corey Durocher was able to get a deflection of his own by Frey to square the game up at 2-2 with just 10:01 left in regulation. The hockey gods then put added pressure on Rapid City as Josh Elmes was assessed a five minute major boarding at 11:41. It looked as though Rapid City had put together enough defense to keep the Idaho scoring machine at bay but Cole Ully had other thoughts, putting the Steelheads up after firing a one-timer from the face-off circle. The eventual game-winner gave the Steelheads a 3-2 victory, even as the Rush pulled Frey and got another extra-attacker after a late Idaho penalty. Idaho would hang on to come away with the 3-2 win, however.
Philippe Desrosiers is credited with the win stopping 20-of-22 shots on the night while Christian Frey is credited with the loss stopping 25-of-28 shots faced.
Both teams will square off one last time to close out the weekend series before Christmas. Puck drop is scheduled for 7:05pm MT on Saturday at the Rushmore Plaza Civic Center.