Brown Bears, Magicians take 2-0 series leads in Midwest
Midwest Division Semi-Finals, Game 2: Kenai River 5 @ Janesville 1 (Kenai River leads series, 2-0) - Daymin Dodge scored twice and Lucas Wahlin had three assists as the Kenai River Brown Bears defeated the Janesville Jets 5-1 to take a commanding 2-0 series lead in the Midwest Division Semi-Final. Peter Morgan had a goal and an assist while Gramm McCormack and Theo Thrun each found the back of the net as well. Nick Leyer had the only goal for Janesville in the loss. Luke Pavicich was incredible as he made 44 saves for Kenai River. Riley Sims stopped 30 shots for Janesville in a losing effort.
Midwest Division Semi-Finals, Game 2: MN Magicians 7 @ Fairbanks 2 (Minnesota leads series, 2-0) - The Minnesota Magicians scored seven unanswered goals to take down the Fairbanks Ice Dogs for the second consecutive night. Just like in Game 1, the Ice Dogs scored the game’s first two goals with Tyler Stewart and Bret Link finding the back of the net. Lleyton Roed and Gavin Best would knot the game up before the first intermission. Simon Falk, Jack Cronin, Luc Laylin and Spencer Light all scored in a dominant second period for Minnesota. Cronin would add his second goal of the game in the third on the power play. Andy Beran picked up the win in the blue paint as he made 38 saves. Kayden Hargraves took the loss in net, he and Ryan Keyes combined to make 29 stops.
Central Division Semi-Finals, Game 2: MN Wilderness 3 @ Bismarck 6 (Bismarck leads series, 2-0) - Six different Bobcats found the back of the net as Bismarck beat the Minnesota Wilderness 6-3 to take a 2-0 series lead in their Central Division Semi-Final. Isaac Henkemeyer-Howe had the only goal of the opening period but Tim Piechowski and Ben Troumbly padded the Bismarck lead midway through the second period. The teams would trade goals just 21 seconds apart as Gunnar Thoreson got Minnesota on the board before Nico Chmelevski put the Bobcats back up by three goals. Late in the middle frame Ethan Wolthers and Mikol Sartor scored 17 seconds apart for the Wilderness and in an instant Minnesota trailed by just one. Despite being outshot 15-7 over the final 20 minutes, Quinn Rudrud and Jack Conroy would add insurance for Bismarck and put the game on ice. Cameron Korpi stopped 33 of 36 shots to grab the victory. Jacob Zacharewicz got the loss despite making 26 saves.
Central Division Semi-Finals, Game 2: Minot 3 @ Aberdeen 4 (Aberdeen leads series, 2-0) - Two late power play goals lifted the Aberdeen Wings to a Game 2 victory over the Minot Minotauros by a score of 4-3. With the game tied at two and less than three minutes remaining, Trevor Russell fired a shot from the point that found it’s way through traffic and gave Aberdeen a late lead. 20 seconds later, Clayton Cosentino would add his first goal of the postseason which would be the eventual game winner. Tyler Kostelecky and Kyle Kukkonen gave Minot a 2-0 lead after the first period but Spencer Schneider and Payton Matsui would light the lamp before the late game heroics. Blaine Warnert had a goal late for Minot in the closing seconds. Jake Sibell was the winner in goal, stopping 27 shots. Keenan Rancier was dealt the loss as he made 33 saves.
South Division Semi-Finals, Game 2: Wichita Falls 2 @ Lone Star 1 (Wichita Falls leads series, 2-0) - Carter Korpi’s goal with just 3:56 remaining was the difference as the Wichita Falls Warriors doubled up the Lone Star Brahmas 2-1 in Game 2. The Warriors trailed for the majority of the game and were outshot 28-9 through two period of play. Luke Beerman had the opening goal of the game about midway through the first period to put the Brahmas ahead. In the opening minutes of the final frame, Cole Teleki scored his first goal of the playoffs to even things at one goal apiece. The two teams traded chances throughout the third period before Korpi’s dagger. Owen Bartoszkiewicz was sensational in between the pipes as he made 32 saves to pick up his second win in as many nights. Guy Blessing was the losing netminder as he stopped 15 shots.
South Division Semi-Finals, Game 2: Amarillo 1 @ Shreveport 2 (OT) (Series Tied 1-1) - Billy Feczko was the overtime hero as he blasted a one timer past Andrew Takacs to give the Mudbugs an improbable victory on Saturday night. After going almost the whole night without lighting the lamp, Joe Mack converted on a rebound chance and tied the game with just 35 seconds to play, forcing the sudden death overtime. Harrison Scott registered the only tally for Amarillo in the loss. Cole Hudson turned aside 29 shots while Takacs had 33 saves in the loss.
East Division Semi-Finals, Game 2: Maryland 6 @ Johnstown 4 (Series Tied 1-1) - Four first-period goals helped the Maryland Black Bears to their first ever playoff win as they defeated the Johnstown Tomahawks 6-4. Grady Friedman, Conor Cole, Jude Kurtas and Josh Nixon all scored in the opening 20 minutes to give Maryland a commanding lead after one period. Johnstown got back within one as Reed stark and Jay Ahearn scored power play goals early in the second period. Kevin Scott would put the Black Bears back up by two with his first postseason goal. Stark’s second goal of the game once again brought the Tomahawks within one but Luke Mountain’s empty net goal would secure the Maryland victory. Dusty Geregach also scored in the loss for Johnstown. Hannes Kollen made 31 saves to pick up the win in between the pipes. Josh Graziano took the loss for Johnstown, he and Sam Evola teamed up to make 15 stops.