Brownies sweep Ice Dogs
By Mike Nesper | Peninsula Clarion
The visiting Kenai River Brown Bears completed a three-game sweep of Fairbanks with a 3-2 shootout win on Saturday in North American Hockey League action.
\”We needed a real focused effort,\” Brown Bears head coach Oliver David said, as Fairbanks is one of the toughest rinks in the league to play in. Prior to this series, the Ice Dogs were 15-3 at home this season.
Coming into the series with Fairbanks, the Brown Bears were 2-12-1 on the road.
\”Some things went our way tonight that haven\’t went our way all season,\” David said. \”The ball is rolling and the boys are on board.\”
Brown Bears goaltender Dainis Vasiljevs stopped all four Ice Dogs attempts in the shootout round. Brett Lubanski and Johan Skinnars scored goals for Kenai River.
Vasiljevs stopped 41 of the 43 shots he faced in the game.
\”It\’s a very satisfying feeling,\” David said about the win. \”I give all the credit to the players.\”
With the win, the Brownies improve to 10-26-2. They are eight points behind the third-place Alaska Avalanche of Wasilla in the West Division. The Ice Dogs (24-14-2) remain in second place in the West and have a 10-point cushion on the Avs.
Down 2-1, Kenai\’s Kegan Kiel tied the game at the 5:32 mark of the third period.
Fairbanks opened the scoring on a goal from Aaron McGill 3:31 into the game. The Brown Bears tied the game at 1-all in the second on a goal from newcomer Shane Halaas. The Ice Dogs regained the lead two minutes later when Michael Juola netted a power-play goal.
\”I\’m very proud of them,\” David said of his team. \”I appreciate them going to battle for themselves and for me and for the whole community of Kenai.\”
The Brown Bears defeated Fairbanks 3-2 on Friday.
\”We picked up where we left off on Thursday,\” David said. The Brownies notched a 3-2 win in Game 1 of the series.
David said his team got into penalty trouble in the third period. Kenai River took four third-period penalties.
Fairbanks\’ James Saintey tied the game at 2-all on a power-play goal with 2:29 remaining in the third period. Less than a minute later, Raymond Stenehjem gave Kenai River the go-ahead goal, which turned out to be the game winner.
\”On ensuing shift, no one hung their heads, nobody got down,\” David said of his team\’s reaction to the tying goal.
The Ice Dogs outshot Kenai River 43-24. Brown Bears goaltender Mike Martin made 41 saves in the game.
\”Martin was exceptional,\” David said. \”If you\’re going to win games, you need that center figure to be very good,\” he said of the goaltender position.
\”We were pretty aggressive when we were five-on-five,\” David said. \”Our defense has been great as well. It\’s been really consistent in last 48 hours.\”
Braden Kinnebrew started the scoring with a power-play goal in the first period. The Ice Dogs tied the game in the second with a power-play goal from Josh Nelson. Brad Duwe gave the Brown Bears a 2-1 lead with a power-play goal two minutes after Nelson found the back of the net.
Kenai River went 2-of-8 on power plays. Fairbanks scored on two of its 12 man advantages.
Brown Bears 3, Ice Dogs 2
Kenai River 1 1 1 — 3
Fairbanks 0 1 1 — 2
First period –1. Kenai River, Kinnebrew (Skinnars, Lubanksi), pp, 10:11. Penalties –Keani River 5 for 13:00; Fairbanks 6 for 23:00.
Second period — 2. Fairbanks, Nelson (Pustin, Larson), pp, 4:15; 3. Kenai River, Duwe (Royston, Lubanski), pp, 6:05. Penalties — Kenai River 5 for 10:00; Fairbanks 3 for 6:00.
Third period — 4. Fairbanks, Saintey (Politz, Larson), pp, 17:31; 5. Kenai River, Stenehjem (Skinnars, Duwe), 18:16. Penalties — Kenai River 4 for 8:00; Fairbanks 5 for 18:00.
Shots on goals –Kenai River, 9-10-5 — 24; Fairbanks, 12-17-14 — 43.
Goalies — Kenai River, Martin (43 shots, 41 saves); Fairbanks, Phillippi (24 shots, 21 saves).
Power plays –Kenai River, 2 for 8; Fairbanks, 2 for 12.
Brown Bears 3, Ice Dogs 2, SO
Kenai River 0 1 1 0 1 — 3
Fairbanks 1 1 0 0 0 — 2
First period — 1. Fairbanks, McGill, ps, 16:29. Penalties –Kenai River 2 for 4:00; Fairbanks 2 for 4:00.
Second period –2. Kenai River, Halaas (Ramsey, Kiel), 12:48; 3. Fairbanks, Juola (Larson, Nelson), pp, 14:52. Penalties — Kenai River 4 for 8:00; Fairbanks 2 for 4:00.
Third period –4. Kenai River, Kiel (Beck), 5:32. Penalties — Kenai River 3 for 6:00; Fairbanks 2 for 4:00.
Overtime –None. Penalties — None.
Shootout — Kenai River 2 (Bayagich ng, Fusaro ng, Kinnebrew ng, Lubanski g, Skinnars g); Fairbanks 0 (Tolkinen ng, Voigt ng, Brock ng, McGill ng).
Shots on goal — Kenai River 9-13-5-1 –28; Fairbanks 13-18-10-2 –43.
Goalies — Kenai River, Vasiljevs (43 shots, 41 saves); Fairbanks, Taffe (28 shots, 26 saves).
Power plays — Kenai River 0 for 3; Fairbanks 1 for 6.