IOWA TOPS GRAND RAPIDS 3-2 IN SHOOTOUTNov 2, 2018
GRAND RAPIDS, MICHIGAN – Iowa Wild (6-2-0-0; 12 pts.) rookie center Gerry Fitzgerald scored the shootout winner, as the Wild capped off a comeback victory, a 3-2 shootout win over Grand Rapids Griffins (3-5-0-1; 7 pts.) on Friday night.
With a chance to give Iowa its first road win of the season, Fitzgerald fired a shot from the slot, which beat Griffins goaltender Patrik Rybar (20 saves) past his glove. It was the third straight win overall for the Wild, as the team improved to 3-0-1-0 in its last four games at Van Andel Arena, dating back to last season.
Trailing 1-0 entering the third period, Wild rookie winger Mason Shaw tied the game, as he converted off the rush from the left wing side at 5:48 of the third period. Fitzgerald drew the primary assist, while defenseman Brennan Menell also picked up a helper.
Kyle Rau then put Iowa in front, scoring just over two minutes later. His fourth goal of the season came on the power play and was assisted by center Cal O’Reilly and blue-liner Eric Martinsson. On the play, O'Reilly took a shot from the top of the left circle, which Rau deflected past Rybar and just over the goal line.
Grand Rapids made it a 2-2 game on Chris Terry’s tally, an even-strength goal with 8:46 remaining in regulation. Attacking along the right wing side, Terry fired a wrist shot which beat Wild goaltender Andrew Hammond (34 saves).
That goal eventually sent the game to overtime, where neither team was able to win the contest.
In the shootout, each team struck for one goal through the first three rounds, with winger Sam Anas connecting for the Wild on its first attempt.
Hammond then denied Griffins forward Axel Holmstrom in the fourth round, giving Fitzgerald an opportunity to win the game.
The Griffins got on the board first on a goal by Holmstrom, as he scored at the 9:25 mark of the first period. Holmstrom’s third goal of the season was set up by defenseman Libor Sulak. That was the only goal through 40 minutes of play.
At night’s end, the shots were 36-23 in favor of the Griffins. Hammond improved to 6-1-0-0, including 2-0 in shootouts, where he’s stopped six of seven total attempts.
The Wild continues its three-in-three weekend with a road game in Rockford, Illinois on Saturday, November 3. The puck drops at 6 p.m. CT as the Wild and IceHogs kick off their season series.
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.