IOWA SUFFERS 6-3 LOSS TO TEXASDec 12, 2018
-Forward Justin Kloos extends point streak to four games in the loss-
Iowa Wild (14-6-4-2; 34 pts.) suffered a 6-3 loss at the hands of the Texas Stars (13-9-1-1; 28 pts.) Wednesday night in Cedar Park, Texas.
The Wild once again opened the scoring as Gerry Fitzgerald potted the first goal of the game just 2:07 into the first period. After a face-off win at the left dot, forward Mason Shaw sent a shot wide that was corralled by fellow rookie Will Bitten. Bitten circled behind the net and threw the puck in front, where Fitzgerald picked up the rebound and beat goaltender Landon Bow (25 saves) on the right side. The goal marked the 10th of the season for Fitzgerald, ranking third-most among all rookies in the AHL.
Texas tied the game at 1-1 at 14:52 in the first period when forward Michael Mersch notched his sixth of the season. Stars forward Denis Gurianov took a shot from the right side of the blueline that Mersch deflected past goaltender Kaapo Kahkonen (24 saves) for the tally. Forward Roope Hintz recorded the secondary assist on the play.
At the end of the first period, the score was tied 1-1 while Iowa led in shots 9-8.
Iowa regained the lead at 5:28 in the second period when forward Colton Beck recorded his eighth goal of the season. Beck hopped off the bench and jumped in the rush, where he received a pass from forward Justin Kloos and lasered a puck into the top right corner of the net. Defenseman Louie Belpedio recorded his sixth assist on the season and Beck’s goal was his sixth point (2g, 4a) in his last three games.
The Stars once again tied the game, knotting the game at 2-2 at 10:52 in the middle frame. Texas forward Erik Condra took a shot on Kahkonen, which the Wild goaltender saved. As he tried to cover the puck, Condra chipped the puck over his pad for his 11th consecutive game with a point with the tally. Forward Samuel Laberge and defenseman Dillon Heatherington earned the assists.
Texas took its first lead of the game with one minute remaining in the second period on a tally from forward Colin Markison. Forward Colton Hargrove forced a turnover at the Wild’s blueline, prompting him and Markison to have a 2-on-0. Hargrove slid the puck over to Markison on the right side of the net and he buried his chance for his third goal of the season.
With 40 minutes finished, Texas led 3-2 and was outshooting the Wild 24-19.
The Stars scored twice in a 1:24 period while taking advantage of an extended power play. Just nine seconds into a 5-on-3, forward Adam Mascherin capitalized as he beat Kahkonen blocker side with a wrist shot from the left faceoff circle for his 11th of the season. Gurianov registered his second assist of the game and 19th of the season on the play.
Texas recorded its fourth consecutive goal, once again on the power play, as Mersch tallied his second score of the game at 8:24 in the final frame. Kahkonen made a glove save on a shot from Hintz, but Mersch crashed the net and lofted the puck over Kahkonen and into the back of the net for the goal. Defenseman Ben Gleason earned the second helper.
Wild forward Dmitry Sokolov cut Texas’ lead to 5-3 at 9:27 in the third period for his third goal in two games. With forward Gerry Mayhew screening Bow, Sokolov ripped a shot into the top right corner from right faceoff dot, netting his eighth goal of the season. Forwards Kyle Rau and defenseman Ryan Murphy secured assists on Sokolov’s tally.
The Wild pulled Kahkonen late in the game and at 19:44, Condra potted an empty net goal to give Texas the 6-3 victory handing Iowa its first deficit by more than two goals on the 2018-19 season.
When the final horn sounded, Texas outshot Iowa 30-28 in the contest. Iowa finished the game 1-for-5 on the power play and 2-for-4 on the penalty kill.
The Wild returns to the ice Friday night when the team takes on the San Antonio Rampage for the first time this season. Puck drop is at 7:30 p.m.
The Iowa Wild 2018-19 season is presented by Mercy 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.