Sioux Falls, SD--The return of their top line wasn’t enough for the Sioux Falls Stampede as they fell in a 12-round shootout, 4-3 to the Waterloo Black Hawks Friday night at the Arena. Three different players lit the lamp for the Herd (10-5-2) and David Jacobson prevented 40 of 43 Black Hawk attempts. It was the first game back for Dennis Kravchenko, C.J. Franklin and Zeb Knutson, who helped Team USA win gold at the World Junior A Challenge last weekend.
“You get a point,” said head coach Cary Eades. “But it was kind of a three-point swing. That was a game we could have won in regulation.”
Sioux Falls struck gold first 2:47 into the game when forward Michael Buonincontri deflected a Tony Calderone shot past Waterloo netminder Cal Petersen, Buonincontri’s fifth tally of the year. The Herd killed off four Waterloo power plays in the period while capitalizing on one of their own with 4:16 left in the first, as Zeb Knutson blasted in a shot after a smooth pass from Griffen Molino across the crease. Jacobson stopped all nine shots thrown at him in the first twenty minutes, allowing his team to waltz into the locker room with an early 2-0 cushion.
“He (Jacobson) played unbelievable,” said Calderone. “We just couldn’t do it for him tonight.”
The Herd lead was chopped in half 1:42 into the second period when Waterloo winger got it past Jacobson. However, another one of the Herd's gold medal winners hit the scoreboard with 5:25 to go thanks to an absolutely gorgeous goal from Dennis Kravchenko. The San Clemente, Calif. native deked a Waterloo defender in between the circles with a smooth move and slammed a shot in off of Petersen’s glove from the left side. Sioux Falls had their momentum heading into the final period tempered with just 0.7 seconds left before intermission as Waterloo once again brought the deficit to one goal courtesy of Alec McCrea who picked up a loose puck in the slot and quickly fired a shot through traffic and into the net.
“The second period really cost us,” said Eades. “We were turnover city and there was very poor defensive zone coverage as well.”
The 3-2 Herd advantage held for most of the third period until Waterloo’s Patrick Russell evened things up with only 2:16 left on the game’s clock. The Stampede had an opportunity late in the third period and into the overtime with a power play chance, but Cal Peterson stood tall in the Waterloo net, keeping the game tied 3-3.
Neither team scored in five minutes worth of the extra session, sending the game into a shootout which entertained fans for 12 rounds before Waterloo’s Hayden Shaw clinched the victory with a goal in round 12 to help the Hawks squeak past the Herd with a 4-3 victory.
“We’ve got to learn how to finish teams off,” said Eades. “You’ve got to put teams away.”
Sioux Falls will return to the Arena tomorrow night to face the Tri-City Storm at 7:05. It is also Military Night presented by the South Dakota Army National Guard. The first 1,000 fans through the doors will receive a free Military dog tag, courtesy of the South Dakota Army National Guard. Military members can get tickets for just $6 each by presenting their military id at the box office. Doors open at 6:15 PM.
Courtesy: Sioux Falls Stampede