MISSISSIPPI SEA WOLVES at MOTOR CITY ROCKERS
Rockers Secure Third In Continental Division Behind Coash's Hattrick
By Ben Szilagy
Fraser, MI – All season long the Mississippi SeaWolves have been a thorn in the Motor City Rockers’ side taking four games earlier this year in Biloxi.
But on home ice, the Rockers earned their first win over the SeaWolves, 7-3, behind Scott Coash’s second hat-trick of the season on Friday night. Motor City also clinched third place in the Continental Division with the win.
After the ensuing face-off from the second media timeout in the first period, Motor City struck first.
With 8:40 left in the first period, Cody Oakes moved the puck behind the endline away from a battle. Brad Reitter won a quick confrontation and found an opportunity to center the puck to Vanderwiel in the slot. Vanderwiel fired it glove side for his fifth of the season and a 1-0 lead.
Five minutes later the Rockers struck again while killing a power play.
Josh Colten chipped the puck past a crashing SeaWolves pair and ahead to Scott Coash to create a 2-on-0 breakaway with Declan Conway. Conway carried the puck into the offensive zone and slid a quick pass to Coash who buried the puck for a 2-0 lead with 3:50 to play. It was his fourth short handed goal of the season, his 36th overall.
47-seconds later, Coash struck again.
The puck was played from the nearside boards from Connor Inger to Ryan Rotondi at the far side circle. Rotondi fired a quick wrist shot that was saved, but Coash put away the rebound for his second of the night and a 3-0 lead with 3:03 to play in the first.
Much like last weekend, however, Mississippi used the second period to get back into the game.
2:20 into the middle frame, Kyle Russell hustled to get control of the puck in the offensive zone on the forecheck. Russell then fed the puck to the slot where Jeff Eppright stepped into a wrist shot that beat Trevor Babin that cut into the lead 3-1.
Thirteen minutes later Russell got Mississippi within one when Babin was interfered with. Yaroslav Yevdokimov landed and rolled over Babin in the crease as the puck squirted out to Russell’s stick. The defensemen from Dallas, TX put the puck into the net for his 7th of the season for a 3-2 game with 4:32 to play.
The Rockers were able to stop the bleeding two minutes later when Josh Colten collected the puck on the nearside boards and came behind the net to survey the ice. Colten saw Dante Suffredini crash the slot and feathered a one-timer to his defensive partner who buried the puck inside the far side post for a 4-2 lead.
Russell again made a great play in the offensive zone for Mississippi that allowed the SeaWolves to pull within one, as he kept the puck inside the zone. He slid a back-handed pass to Lucas Helland who fired the puck through a crowd and past Babin for a 4-3 game, and his 5th of the season.
The third period was reminiscent of the first as Motor City didn’t allow a goal, and instead built up a four goal lead.
Coash completed his second hat-trick of the season 4:37 into the final frame for his 38th goal of the season for a 5-3 lead.
The Rockers got two empty net goals, one from Vanderwiel with 1:15 to play and one from Ryan Rotondi with 1.9 to play for a 7-3 win.
Motor City and Mississippi will square off for the final time this season tomorrow night on fan appreciation night at Big Boy Arena at 6:00pm.
Sea Wolves Stumble Against Rockers
By Nick Roesch
Fraser, MI – The Mississippi Sea Wolves logged three goals in the second period on Friday night, but they were silenced elsewhere in a 7-3 loss to the Motor City Rockers at Big Boy Arena.
After a consistent start to the game by both sides, the Rockers tacked together three goals between Danny Vanderweil and Scott Coash. Coash scored a pair just 47 seconds apart, including one being on the penalty kill.
The Sea Wolves offense appeared in the second period, with Jeff Eppright and Kyle Russell combining forces to make it a 3-2 game. The teams then traded strikes between Motor City’s Dante Suffredini and Lucas Helland of the Sea Wolves. Helland’s tally was his fifth of the season.
With the score being 4-3 Rockers entering the final period, Motor City put away the Sea Wolves for good with another three-goal stretch. Coash potted one for his hat trick before empty netters arrived from Vanderweil and Ryan Rotondi.
Anthony D’Aloisio took the defeat in net despite stopping 39 shots. Winning goaltender Trevor Babin made 25 saves before the Rockers win became official.
The Sea Wolves will look to conclude their season on a high note tomorrow, April 15 with a finale at Motor City. Puck drop is set for 5:00pm Central Time at Big Boy Arena.