It doesn't get any more exciting than this. All three teams in Pool B... Texas, Fairbanks and Bismarck, reversed their fortunes from a day ago and all won on Day 2 at the Robertson Cup as all six teams are now tied with 1-1 records after two days of pool play.
It sets up quite a scenario for Saturday's three round-robin games. The message will be simple... win and you advance. It is going to be quite a day, but let's first see how we got there with a recap of Friday's games:
Bismarck 3 vs. St. Louis 2 – Two goals in the 3rd period helped the Bobcats come from behind to defeat the Bandits, 3-2. Each team now has a 1-1 record at the Robertson Cup. The Bandits started the scoring in the 1st period as NAHL leading scorer Joe Kalisz lit the lamp with help from Joe Birmingham. It would be only goal of the period as the Bobcats outshot the Bandits 9-8 in the opening frame. Donald Olivieri tied the game at 1-1 in the 2nd period as he slipped a shot past Bandits goalie Spencer Viele. However, just two minutes later, it was Kalisz scoring again to give St. Louis a 2-1 lead after two periods. The Bobcats struck twice in the 3rd period as Shane Omdahl scored on the power play and Adam Knochenmus scored with less than 10 minutes remaining for the eventual game-winning goal. Bobcats goaltender Tommy Burke held the fort the rest of the way with 22 saves to help secure the Bobcats 3-2 win. Viele also made 22 saves in the loss. Boxscore
Fairbanks 3 vs. Amarillo 1 – The Fairbanks Ice Dogs got themselves back in the Robertson Cup picture thanks to stifling defenseman and good goaltending in a 3-1 win over the Amarillo Bulls on Friday. Both teams are now 1-1 in round-robin play. After a scoreless 1st period, Anton Racklin started the scoring for Fairbanks on the power play as he put home a shot past Bulls goaltender Gregg Gruehl for a 1-0 Fairbanks lead. Amarillo would tie the game less than five minutes later while on a 5 on 3 power play, as Greg Gibson one-timed a shot from the high slot past Ice Dogs goaltender Steve Perry. Fairbanks would answer right back as Pete Spratte pounced on a rebound shot from Pavlo Padakin to make it 2-1 after two periods. Tayler Munson would score the only goal of the 3rd period as he converted on a broken play to lift a shot over the blocker glove of Gruehl and the eventual 3-1 win. Perry made 20 saves in the win, while Gruehl took the loss making 21 saves. Boxscore
Texas 5 vs. Port Huron 4 - In the wildest and final game of the day, things got pretty crazy from the drop of the puck between Texas and Port Huron. Less than four minutes in, Brett D’Andrea converted on a rebound to sneak a shot past Texas goalie Hunter Leisner for a 1-0 Port Huron lead. Just two minutes later, the Falcons went up 2-0 as Mike Moroso shelved a shot over Leisner. Texas stormed right back with three straight goals. Drew Allen got things started for the Tornado with a shot from in front that snuck past Falcons goalie Max Milosek. Mico Solorzano tipped home a shot from the point just :21 seconds later to tie the game at 2-2, then Jackson Leef put home a power play goal to make it 3-2 in favor of Texas. Port Huron rounded out the 1st period scoring as Nolan Valleau lit the lamp. Texas dominated the 2nd period, outshooting Port Huron 13-6 and registering two goals, a second from Jackson Leef and another from Jordan Lovick to take a 5-3 lead into the 2nd intermission. Port Huron cut the lead early in the period to 5-4 on a great individual effort from Logan Lemirande, but it would not be enough as Texas held firm the rest of the way as they picked up their first win of the round-robin. Milosek finished with 29 saves in the loss, while Leisner had to make just 15 saves in the win. Boxscore
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