Prescott Valley, AZ – The Arizona Sunodgs earned the win Saturday night against the Rapid City Rush with a 4-1 win at the Rushmore Civic Plaza Center.
Halfway through the opening frame and Rapid City received a penalty shot after Scott Brannon was tripped, but his shot was turned away by Arizona’s David Brown. Scott Wray and Matt McCready would each receive a matching five minute penalty for fighting after they dropped their gloves just inside the Sundogs territory. Five minutes later Paul Kurceba would score his first goal of the season for the Sundogs and Johan Ryd and Chad Nehring would receive credit for the assists. Less than a minute following the Sundogs goal they would pick up a chance to improve their lead when Damian Surma was called for interference, but only got off one shot.
Derek LeBlanc would extend the Sundogs lead 9:20 into the second period with a wrap-around goal, McCready and Nehring picked up the assists. Brown had more than one amazing save in the second period, with one coming on the Rush’s power play when Brown would trap the puck under his body as he laid out for the save denying Rapid City the power play goal. With 54 seconds left in the middle frame Wray would cut Rapid City’s deficit in half with a shot just over Brown’s shoulder.
The Sundogs pulled ahead and sealed the deal in the final 20 minutes with a power play goal from Nehring, five minutes into the period, his third point of the night. LeBlanc would also tally his second point of the night when he was credited with the assist along with Mario Larocque. With 2:55 remaining in regulation Rapid City choose to pull their netminder making it 6-on-5 hockey and 25 seconds later Adam Smyth would register the Sundogs fourth and final goal of the night. Matt Register and Ryd earned the assists, Ryd’s second point of the night.
Brown takes the win for the Sundogs making 34 saves. Arizona was outshot by Rapid City 35-27. Arizona was 1-3 on the power play and Rapid City was 0-2 on the power play. Brown extended his winning streak to three games. The Sundogs return to Prescott Valley and host the Ft. Worth Brahmas for a two-game set, Tuesday and Wednesday at Tim’s Toyota Center.
The Arizona Sundogs are the Central Hockey League affiliate of the NHL’s Phoenix Coyotes. Season tickets, mini-plan, and single-game ticket information is now available by calling (928) 759-6600 or visiting arizonasundogs.com.