Another game, another victory for the Indy Fuel. For the 10th time in the last 12 outings, and the ninth time in the last 10, the Fuel came away with a victory, beating the Evansville IceMen 4-3 Friday at the Ford Center in Evansville.
It extended the Fuel’s road winning streak to five games and marked the seventh straight road game without a regulation loss. Overall, the Fuel have now won two straight.
Indy seized control of the game in the final minute of the first and the opening minute of the second. With the game tied 1-1, Mike Duco cashed in off a strong feed from Justin Holl off the rush with 37 seconds left in the first. Nicklas Lindberg and Pete Massar started the play in the defensive zone, Holl carried it into the offensive zone and the Fuel fed Duco for the goal. Then, in the opening minute of the second, the Fuel went on a power play :16 in. At :35, Vincent Arseneau scored his fifth goal as a member of the Fuel off a feed from Lindberg to give Indy a 3-1 lead.
Evansville’s Myles Bell answered with a rocket midway through the period, but some persistence around the net allowed the Fuel to re-take a two-goal lead with 3:47 left in the second period. Sam Posa’s shot was stopped by Evansville’s Chris Driedger, as was Evan Vossen’s rebound. But Matt White got to the next rebound and poked it home to put Indy up 4-2.
Evansville’s Brandon Wong scored on a breakaway in the final second of the second period to cut the lead to 4-3.
In the third, Evansville outshot the Fuel 12-9 and had an early power play, but the Fuel PK and goaltender Mac Carruth were up to the challenge, preserving the one-goal lead and the victory.
Carruth, the reigning ECHL Goaltender of the Month, stopped 29 shots for his eighth consecutive win in the Fuel net.
Indy is now 5-1-1 against Evansville this season.
In the opening period, Evansville’s Robin Soudek – a new acquisition in the last couple of weeks – opened the scoring eight minutes in, but Johnny McGuire answered with his first goal of the season with 6:39 left in the period, tying the game at 1-1.
The Fuel are now 16-22-7 and remain in sixth place in the ECHL North. They are three points back of fifth-place Wheeling and five back of Cincinnati and Kalamazoo, who share third place and both won Friday. Indy plays again in Evansville on Saturday, then returns home to face Kalamazoo at 3:05 p.m. Sunday.
- Matt White (Fuel) GWG
- Peter Sakaris (EVV) 6 shots
- Evan Vossen (Fuel) 2 assists
- Just keep piling up points. The Fuel are now just five points back of third place, but started a huge three-game weekend with two, especially having to protect a one-goal lead in the third. Passed with flying colors.
- It’s nice to be standings-watching. Wheeling and Kalamazoo both won tonight, Cincinnati lost to Elmira, getting the Fuel within contact. After tomorrow’s game at Evansville, the Fuel’s next three games are against the teams directly above them in the standings – Kalamazoo and Cincy, with two of the games at home. Huge stretch coming up.
- To show how well Mac Carruth has been playing, this is the first time in nine games he has allowed more than two goals in a game – an unbelievable run. As a team, the Fuel have not allowed more than three goals in a game since Jan. 10, a span of 12 games.
- Mike Duco’s goal now gives him points in five straight games. He has two goals and three assists in that stretch, and now has 11 goals for the year. Duco is +4 in his last 10 games.
- Speaking of guys with streaks, Vincent Arseneau upped his scoring streak to four games. He has three goals and an assist in that stretch, and now has five goals and three assists in 11 games with the Fuel.
- Great to see Johnny McGuire find the back of the net. He does a lot in providing a physical presence for the Fuel, and it’s always good to see those guys light the lamp. With McGuire’s goal, every skater on the Fuel roster has tallied at least one goal this season.
- Evan Vossen’s two-assist game was his first two-point game since Nov. 8, when he was playing for the Missouri Mavericks. He now has four assists in 14 games with the Fuel.
- Matt White’s goal was his first since Dec. 17 against Reading. Since the Fuel streak began, White is +3 and has played a key role as both a penalty killer and centering what has become the team’s shutdown line with Vossen and Rhett Bly his usual wings. White also led the Fuel with five shots.
- Pete Massar’s assist gives him points in four of his last five games.
- Justin Holl now has a goal and five assists in his last 10 outings, with the primary assist on Duco’s goal tonight.
- PP 1-4 tonight, PK 0-3. Special teams again coming up big.
The line combos are starting to look familiar.
Vincent Arseneau-Kyle Stroh-Garett Bembridge
Mike Duco-Nicklas Lindberg-Pete Massar
Evan Vossen-Matt White-Rhett Bly
Dan Ford-Nick Bruneteau
Sam Posa-Nick Jones
Kirill Gotovets-Justin Holl
BU: Shane Owen
Next up: Another 8:15 p.m. faceoff in Evansville on Saturday before returning home Sunday to face Kalamazoo at 3:05 p.m.