The Indy Fuel had a good start fueled by rookie Cody Sharib, but the Missouri Mavericks scored twice in 38 seconds to take the lead and eventually beat the Fuel 4-2 Saturday at the Silverstein Eye Centers Arena in Independence, Mo.
Sharib scored on consecutive shifts in the first period, tallying two goals in 1:53, but Missouri’s Jesse Root and Chris Owens scored 38 seconds apart in the final five minutes of the middle frame to re-take the lead for the Mavericks, who went on to increase their ECHL-best record to 16-2-1.
Indy is now 9-7-1 after its second 4-2 loss to Missouri in as many nights, and fourth defeat on their November road swing. The Fuel’s five-game roadtrip concludes Sunday at Quad City.
Missouri took an early lead on the 10th goal of the year from Tyler Barnes – who last year led Toledo to the ECHL’s best record.
But the Fuel answered quickly. Walker Wintoneak found Sharib open in the high slot, who ripped a shot past Missouri’s Josh Robinson to tie the game at 7:12 of the period. At 9:05, Kevin Quick slid the puck across the crease to Sharib, who stuffed his fifth goal into the open side to give Indy the lead.
It held until the late stages of the second period. With 4:57 left in the frame, Root pounced on a rebound and scored. 38 seconds later, Owens did the same to give Missouri the lead.
A tight-checking third period saw Indy outshoot Missouri 7-5, but the only goal came from Missouri’s Carter Verhaege – who scored his third goal of the weekend and capped off a three-point night.
Shane Owen stopped 19 shots in the Fuel net, as the two teams each had 23 shots on goal.
- Carter Verhaege (MO) G, 2A, +2
- Chris Owens (MO) G, A, +3
- Cody Sharib (Fuel) 2G, +1
- What Missouri has been able to do, starting 16-2-1, is impressive. The Fuel played them tight twice, but both games ended 4-2. These teams still have a few meetings remaining this year, so we’ll see the Mavericks again.
- Indy is now 0-4-0 on the roadtrip and 3-7-1 overall on the road this season. The Fuel have dealt with some callups and injuries, both part of life in pro hockey, in recent weeks, but an opportunity to cap the trip well against division foe Quad City comes Sunday. Indy is 2-1 against the Mallards.
- Cody Sharib has become quite a sniper for the Fuel early in the year, tallying his fourth and fifth goals of the year this evening, one with a tap-in, one with a snipe from the high slot. Tonight marked the first multi-point game of his pro career.
- Sharib and linemate Kyle Stroh were the two Fuel players on the plus side of the ledger, going +1.
- Defenseman Kevin Quick had the assists on both of Sharib’s goals, including a beautiful first assist on a pass across the goalmouth that led to a tap-in for the second goal. It was his third two-assist game of the year, and snapped a six-game scoreless streak for the veteran D. He now has nine helpers on the season.
- Indy had 23 shots, but Garett Bembridge finds a way to get the puck to the net. He had six shots against his former team.
- The Fuel were 0-2 on the PP, and the Mavericks 0-3.
Fifteen skaters in the lineup tonight. Mattson-Miskovic started together, although Quick & Miskovic were paired together for much of the night. Prior to the game, Patrick Koudys was activated from reserve and Peter Schneider placed on reserve.
Reed Seckel-Alex Lavoie-Garett Bembridge
Dylan Clarke-Matt White-Rhett Bly
Cody Sharib-Kyle Stroh-Walker Wintoneak
Nick Mattson-Zach Miskovic
Sam Jardine-Ben Marshall
Kevin Quick-Patrick Koudys
BU: Mac Carruth
Scratches: Anders Franzon, Peter Schneider (res), Dillon Fournier (res)
Next up: The Fuel finish their roadtrip at 5 p.m. Sunday in Quad City, then return home for a 7:05 p.m. game Thursday against Toledo, the first of back-to-back nights against the Walleye at Indiana Farmers Coliseum.