The Sioux Falls Stampede scored early and often in a 5-2 victory over the Lincoln Stars before 9,661 fans at the PREMIER Center Friday night during Military Appreciation Night. Five different players scored goals while Jami Krannila led the way with a goal and two assists and Jaxson Stauber earned his ninth win of the season with 16 saves. Sioux Falls won for the sixth straight time at home and have now won 11 of their last 12 games at the PREMIER Center. Ryan Johnson, Artem Ivanyuzhenkov, Ethan Phillips and Ryan Sullivan all scored in the win as the Herd (24-10-4) moved into sole possession of third place in the Western Conference.
With a salute to our country’s military before the game, the Stampede didn’t waste anytime to entertain them, scoring just 20 seconds into the contest. Austen Swankler took the puck behind the net and sent a pass in front to Ethan Phillips who quickly ripped it into the goal for a 1-0 lead. Six minutes later the Herd would extend their lead when Jami Krannila broke into the Stars zone all alone and beat Lincoln goaltender Samuel Hlavaj on the backhand for a 2-0 lead. Lincoln would have two power plays in the period, but the Herd played strong and kept the Stars off the board despite being outshot 8-6.
Sioux Falls kept the momentum going in the second and extended their lead at 6:14 when Jami Krannila and Cade Borchardt worked to find Ryan Johnson streaking down the left wing boards who knocked the puck down and wristed it over the right shoulder of Hlavaj and into the net for a 3-0 lead. Four minutes later the Herd were back at it again, this time a beautiful give-and-go from Cade Borchardt to Artem Ivanyuzhenkov who quickly one-timed the puck into the net for his team leading 18th of the season for a 4-0 lead. The Stars would battle back and get on the board at 15:05 when Zach Urdahl found Jordan Power inside the left circle and Urdahl one-timed the pass into the goal. Sioux Falls outshot Lincoln 8-4 in the period.
The Stampede got into some penalty trouble in the third period, but they would be the ones taking advantage as Ryan Sullivan tallied his seventh of the season 6:26 into the period. Sam Stevens stole the puck in the neutral zone and brought the puck into the Lincoln end before dropping it to Sullivan who wristed the shot past the glove side of Hlavaj. Minutes later the Herd were on the power play, but the Stars would score to make it a 5-2 game, but that would be as close as they would get in the game. The Herd shut the door after the goal and earned their sixth straight home win.
Sioux Falls outshot Lincoln 9-6 in the third and 23-18 in the game. Both teams finished the night 0-for-4 on the power play.
The Stampede are off Saturday and Sunday and return to action next Friday when they entertain the Chicago Steel at 7:05 PM inside the PREMIER Center. Tickets available through the KELOLAND Box Office or any Ticketmaster outlet.