Cyclones Earn Point But Fall to Greenville in Shootout, 3-2
GREENVILLE, SC – The Greenville Road Warriors (39-21-3-1) scored three times in the shootout to pick up the extra point against the Cincinnati Cyclones (29-25-6-4) and earn a 3-2 win at the BI-LO Center on Thursday night. Despite the loss, Cincinnati extends their eighth-place lead over Gwinnett to three points.
The Cyclones and Road Warriors skated to a scoreless tie after one period despite a power play chance for each team and three hit-posts by the Road Warriors. Cincinnati outshot Greenville in the opening stanza, 10-6.
The Road Warriors jumped out to a 1-0 lead just 1:24 into the middle frame when Andrew Rowe took a back-handed shot from outside the Cincinnati crease and beat goaltender Brian Foster (L, 23 saves, 7-3-0-1). The Cyclones answered back, however, when Dan Eves caught a perfect Casey Pierro-Zabotel pass from behind the net and deposited his sixth goal of the season to knot the score at the 5:56 mark. Just a moment after the Cyclones killed off their second penalty of the night, Greenville’s Lee Baldwin snuck down the right wing and one-timed home the go-ahead tally at 15:52 – pushing the Road Warriors ahead 2-1 at the second intermission.
Only 40 seconds into the third period, Eves grabbed a loose puck in the crease and tucked home his second of the night to tie the game at two. Despite some good scoring chance for both sides, the score remained knotted at the end of regulation and they went into overtime. In the extra session, Greenville had the better of the scoring chances but once again could not tally – pushing the tilt into a shootout.
Justin Bowers, Brandon Wong, and Shane Harper each scored in succession to force Cincinnati’s hand in round number three. Mathieu Aubin temporarily kept his team alive with his fourth shootout goal of the year. However, in round four, Brian O’Hanley was denied by Road Warriors goalie Nic Riopel (W, 24 saves, 21-12-2) to seal the victory for the home team.
Cincinnati has now played in an ECHL-high 18 overtime/shootout games, with their record standing at 8-10 in such situations.
The Cyclones Radio Network Three Stars of the Game are as follows:
1. Brandon Wong (Game-winning goal for Greenville in shootout)
2. Andrew Rowe (Goal for Greenville)
3. Nic Riopel (Winning goaltender, 24 saves)
The same two teams will be back at it again tomorrow night with another 7:05pm opening face-off at the BI-LO Center. Fans can hear all the action on the Cyclones Radio Network starting at 6:50pm.
The defending Kelly Cup Champions will return to U.S. Bank Arena on Friday, March 25 when they host the Toledo Walleye at 7:30pm. It will be the final Kids Eat Free Night of the season, as all fans ages 2-12 will receive a FREE meal courtesy of John Morrell, Sunkist, and Sun Drop. 2010-11 single game and discounted group tickets are available now. 2011-12 season tickets are on sale NOW! For more information, call 513.421.PUCK (7825) or visit CyclonesHockey.com.
Click here for tonight's box score.