Game 51: Fuel at Missouri

The Indy Fuel headed to Missouri for a three-game series against the league’s top team knowing they’d have to play well to come away with some standings points.

They played well for three games. Unfortunately, they came away without the points they desired, as Missouri completed a sweep of the weekend series with a 3-2 victory over the Fuel Sunday afternoon at the Silverstein Eye Centers Arena.

The Fuel dropped all three games of the weekend series by a goal – 4-3 on Friday, 5-4 on Saturday and 3-2 on Sunday.

Missouri’s Josh Robinson won his 21st straight start, stopping 17 Fuel shots.

The Mavericks took an early lead when Sebastien Sylvestre scored 5:01 into the game, but Ben Marshall answered three minutes later, skating across the point and wrong-footing Robinson with a wrist shot over the netminder’s stick-side shoulder to tie the contest at 1-1. Indy had three first-period power plays to have a chance to extend the lead, but the Mavericks were able to kill off all three – and all five for the game.

In the second, Missouri scored its fourth power play goal of the weekend on a shot by Andrew Courtney to take a 2-1 lead. The Mavericks held a 9-5 shot advantage in the middle period.

Missouri built the lead to 3-1 with 6:54 left when Tyler Barnes scored his 19th goal of the season, but just like the two previous games, the Fuel started a rally.  Zach Miskovic buried a rebound from the right circle with 1:45 left to cut the deficit to one, and the Fuel pushed for the tying goal with goaltender Keegan Asmundson out for an extra attacker, but Robinson held the fort.

The Fuel are now 24-25-2 after the weekend, and now head to Orlando for a three-game series beginning Wednesday.

Boxscore

3 stars

  1. Andrew Courtney (MO), PPG, 4 shots
  2. Tyler Barnes (MO), GWG, A
  3. Sebastien Sylvestre (MO), G, 4 shots

Takeaways

  1. Marshall is the league’s highest-scoring rookie defenseman, and has given the Fuel a big boost from the blueline. His goal was his seventh of the year.
  2. Michael Colantone had a huge weekend with two goals and three assists, giving him five points for the three-game set. He doubled his assist total for the season, and now has 13 points (7G/6A) in 22 games, again giving the Fuel some solid secondary scoring.
  3. Solid first Fuel start for Keegan Asmundson, who is with his third team this season. He was the roommate of former Fuel defenseman Doug Jessey at Canisius, and has been solid at several different stops. Asmundson made 22 saves in his first start with a new team. He becomes the fifth goaltender to play a game for the Fuel this season, joining Mac Carruth, Shane Owen, Jordan Ruby and Cedrick Desjardins. Owen got a full game’s rest after playing in eight consecutive games.
  4. Both goals came from defensemen. Zach Miskovic scored his eighth goal of the year, and tallied his third point in two nights. The captain has 18 points on the season and was also +2.
  5. Indy has had success in 3-in-3s. This snapped a three-game win streak for the Fuel on a three-in-three Sunday.
  6. Indy has two of the longest streaks in the ECHL going right now – the Fuel’s seven-game home win streak is the longest active streak in the league. The five-game road losing streak is the second-longest active one in the league, behind Wichita (8).
  7. Indy is now 0-5-0 against Missouri this season, with two games decided by two goals and three decided by one, and all taking place in the Kansas City suburb of Independence. The Fuel will host the Mavericks on Feb. 23, which will be the final meeting this season. It will also be the Fuel’s next home game.

Lineup

Adam Lapsansky-Alex Lavoie-Daniel Ciampini
Dylan Clarke-Brandon Wong-Peter Schneider
Cody Sharib-Michael Colantone-Rhett Bly
Matt White

Nick Petrecki-Zach Miskovic
Ben Marshall-Anders Franzon
Patrick Koudys-Trevor Campbell

Keegan Asmundson
BU: Shane Owen

Scratches: Andrew Johnston

Next up: The Fuel travel to Orlando for games Wednesday, Thursday and Saturday to complete the season’s longest roadtrip.