Wild Stampede Rally Falls Short Against Tri-City
Herd Nearly Rally From Six Goals Down In 7-6 Loss
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The Sioux Falls Stampede came up just short of making the biggest comeback in franchise history Friday night. Down 7-1 just over four minutes into the third period, the Stampede scored five times in the period to pull within a goal, but fell 7-6 to the Tri-City Storm in front of 6,012 fans at the PREMIER Center.
The Stampede scored three goals just 26 seconds apart and the deficit cut to one with just over four minutes remaining in regulation, but couldn’t get the tying goal.
The loss ended the Herd’s four-game winning streak and seven-game home winning streak as they fell to 31-21-5 on the season. Parker Tuomie led the way with two third period goals and an assist while Mikey Eyssimont added a goal and an assist. The Storm (35-16-6) stayed within three points of first place Sioux City with three games left while the Herd fell five points behind third place Omaha.
The Storm looked like a playoff ready team in the first period as they scored just 4:05 in when Wade Allison blasted a shot from inside the right face-off circle into the back of the net. It stayed that way until the 16:46 mark when the Storm cashed in on a power play opportunity. Mason Appleton sent a pass in the high slot to Jake Wahlin who put the puck past the stick side of Stampede goaltender Art Brey.
Sioux Falls appeared to be headed into the intermission down by just two, but the Storm gave themselves a three-goal lead with 29 seconds left when Bobby Nardella fired a shot into the upper right hand corner of the net to make it a 3-0 game at the end of two periods. The Herd trailed by three goals despite outshooting the Storm 10-7 in the period.
Sioux Falls came out with some renewed energy in the second and got on the board at 4:29 when Lucas Buchta took a slap shot from the left point that traveled through traffic and past Tri-City goaltender Alec Dillon.
The Herd looked to be back in the game as they gained all the momentum, but were unable to get a second goal to cut the lead in half. Tri-City would again go on the power play and would once again convert as Chris Wilkie found Mason Appleton open all alone in the left circle and Appleton one-timed the puck into the net to give the Storm a 4-1 advantage.
The Storm gave the Stampede punch to the gut with just 19:49 left in the period when Wilkie was left all alone in front of the net and wristed a shot into the net for his league leading 33rd goal of the season and the Storm took a 5-1 lead into the locker room. Tri-City outshot the Herd 13-10 in the period.
Tri-City got two quick goals in the third period and it looked the game was well over at 7-1, but Mikey Eyssimont sparked the Stampede with his fourth goal in his last five games at 6:39. Six minutes later the Herd put the 6,012 fans in attendance into a frenzy scoring three goals in just 26 seconds. The first came at 12:40 when Dakota Joshua backhanded a shot into the back of the net to make it a 7-3 game.
10 seconds later Parker Tuomie drove down the right wing side and backhanded a shot into the upper right hand corner of the net to make it a 7-4 game. 16 seconds later it was Tuomie again as this time he drove in front of the net and slid the puck off his forehand right under the left pad of Dillon.
The Herd completely dominated play for the rest of the period and pulled within one at 15:15 when Collin Peters wristed a shot from the right circle into the back of the net to make it a 7-6 game. The Herd pulled Lekkas in the final 90 seconds and were creating great scoring chances, but a controversial penalty on Dakota Joshua for not getting his helmet back on with 46 seconds remaining killed the Stampede’s rally and allowed the Storm to hold on for a 7-6 victory.
Sioux Falls outshot the Storm 35-33 on the night and went an impressive 3-for-5 on the power play while the Herd were 0-for-2.
The Stampede return home Saturday to host the Lincoln Stars at 7:05 PM. It is also Comfy Cozy’s night, presented by Capital One. The Stampede players will be wearing special tie dyed jerseys that will be made available through a silent auction with proceeds benefiting Comfy Cozy’s. Tickets are available at the KELOLAND Box Office or any Ticketmaster outlet.