Newly acquired forward Christian Horn scored two goals while Dakota Joshua added a goal and an assist as the Stampede ended a five-game winless streak with a 5-2 thumping of the Fargo Force Saturday night. Art Brey earned the win in goal with 36 saves as the Stampede (22-14-4) moved into a third place tie with the Sioux City Musketeers in the West. Sioux Falls improved to 6-0-0 against the Force and began the month of February with a victory.
The Stampede were hoping to get off to a quick start in Fargo in the first, but it was the Force tallying the first goal of the game 7:52 from Michael Babcock. Hunter Warner brought the puck down the right wing boards on a 2-on-1 and slid the puck to Babcock who slid the puck under the right pads of Stampede goaltender Art Brey to give the Force a 1-0 edge. Minutes later the Herd were awarded a four minute power play that created several scoring chances, but they came up empty. Sioux Falls would tie the game at 13:59 when Eduard Simun tallied his first career USHL goal. Simun took a pass in the left circle from Dakota Joshua and wristed the puck into the upper right hand corner of the net to tie the game 1-1. The Herd outshot the Force 13-11 in the opening period.
The second brought a lot of energy from the Stampede who controlled play for most of the period and created a lot of scoring chances. Sioux Falls took their first lead of the night at 12:56 when Tony Calderone and Griffen Molino worked the puck up the left wing boards to center ice where Keith Burchett took a pass and raced down the right wing boards and wristed a shot from the right circle into the upper left hand corner of the net past Fargo goaltender Mathias Israelsson to give the Herd a 2-1 lead. Sioux Falls nearly added to their lead later in the period on the power play, but couldn’t get that third goal and for the third straight game took a 2-1 lead into the third period. Sioux Falls outshot the Force 17-14 in the period.
It looked like the string of tough third periods for the Herd would continue when the Force scored just 37 seconds in on a goal from Mikey Eyssimont. Sioux Falls would respond though at 4:12 when they cashed in on a 5-on-3 advantage. Newly acquired forward Christian Horn picked up a rebound in front of the net and wristed a shot past the stick side of Isralesson to regain the lead for the Herd at 3-2. It stayed that way until the 12:08 mark when Ed McGovern chipped the puck off the glass in the Stamped end to center ice where Dakota Joshua picked it up and raced past the Force defenseman on a breakaway, beating Israleson on the glove side to give the Herd a 4-2 advantage. The Force tried to rally late pulling their goaltender with four minutes remaining, but Horn sealed the game for the Stampede with his second goal of the night at 16:32 to give Sioux Falls a 5-2 advantage.
Sioux Falls outshot Fargo 44-38 on the night and went 1-for-7 on the power play while Fargo was 0-for-3. The Herd will battle the Force again this Tuesday at the Sioux Falls Arena at 7:05 PM. It is Bogo Night where fans can purchase 2-for-1 tickets at the Arena Box Office and get 2-for-1 beers at the game from 6:15 PM until the end of the first period if you are wearing your Stampede jersey. In addition, college students who show their ID at the game can also receive 2-for-1 beers during the first period. For more information, contact the Stampede office at 336-6060.
Courtesy: Jim Olander, Vice President Broadcast & Marketing, Sioux Falls Stampede Hockey