IOWA STUNS MILWAUKEE WITH 3-2 VICTORYFeb 19, 2020
-Forward Nico Sturm scores game-winning goal with just 70 seconds remaining-
Iowa Wild (33-15-3-3; 72 pts.) overcame a two-goal deficit to stun the Milwaukee Admirals (35-12-4-3; 77 pts.) with a 3-2 victory Wednesday night.
Tied 2-2 with just 70 seconds left in the third period and the Wild pressing, defenseman Matt Bartkowski ripped a slap shot from the point. The puck bounced off the glass and then back out front to the left of the net. There, forward Nico Sturm knocked the rebound out of mid-air, between the post and goaltender Troy Grosenick (33 saves) and across the goal line for the game-winning tally, clinching the 3-2 victory for Iowa.
Milwaukee opened the scoring at 9:01 in the first period to take a 1-0 lead. While shorthanded, forward Frederick Gaudreau forced a turnover at the blueline, which gave forward Cole Schneider a breakaway on goaltender Kaapo Kahkonen (29 saves). Schneider faked a shot, pulled the puck to his backhand and then banked it off the right post and into the back of the net for his 15th of the season.
Through the first 20 minutes of play, Iowa trailed 1-0 but led in shots 9-8.
The Admirals doubled its lead as forward Rem Pitlick scored his 18th of the season at 2:57 in the middle frame. Forward Eeli Tolvanen deflected a point shot from defenseman Frederic Allard that was saved by Kahkonen, but a long rebound found Pitlick to the right of the cage and he buried his chance for the score.
Iowa got on the board less than two minutes later as forward Kyle Rau recorded his 12th of the season. After a turnover in the slot, forward Mason Shaw corralled the loose and sent a no-look, between-the-legs pass to Rau inside the right circle, where he blistered a one-timer past Grosenick’s glove for the tally.
The Wild made it a 2-2 game when Dmitry Sokolov scored his second goal in as many games and his 13th of the season at 9:56 in the second period. Forward Brandon Duhaime streaked through the neutral zone and into the attacking zone before wristing a shot on net. Grosenick made the save, but Sokolov batted the rebound off his backhand and into the net to tie the contest. Defenseman Brennan Menell earned the secondary assist on the play.
After 40 minutes of play, the score was tied at 2-2 with Iowa leading in shots 24-18.
Sturm’s goal, assisted by Bartkowski and forward Gerry Mayhew, was the lone tally in the third and iced the game for the Wild. Iowa finished the contest outshooting Milwaukee 36-31 and went 0-for-4 on the power play and 2-for-2 on the penalty kill.
The victory was Iowa Head Coach Tim Army’s 70th behind the Wild bench, the most ever by a head coach in team history. The win was also Iowa’s eighth win when trailing after the first period, tied for the most in the league, and moved the team within five points of Milwaukee for the top spot in the Central Division.
Iowa heads down to Texas next for a pair of contests against the Texas Stars, starting Friday night. Puck drop is scheduled for 7:00 p.m.
The Iowa Wild 2019-20 regular season is presented by MercyOne Des Moines Medical Center and runs from October through April. For more information, please contact the Wild office by calling 515-564-8700 or by visiting www.iowawild.com.