(RAPID CITY, SD) - The defense of Rushmore Plaza Civic Center began tonight, as the Rapid City Rush welcomed the Brampton Beast, one of the two newest CHL expansion teams. Physicality, speed, and emotion powered tonight’s matchup, with old Rush faces returning in new form with a new club in the Beast. At the end of the day though, the Rush would win their fifth home opening matchup in their brief six year history. The Rush defeated the Beast by a 4-1 score, as Tim Boron stopped 34 shots on the contest, while Rapid City fired off 47 shots towards the Brampton net. Konrad Reeder, Kyle Stroh, Winston Day Chief, and Justin Faryna capped off the offensively powered night, leading the Rush to three consecutive wins to start the 2013/14 CHL season.
The first period started off with intensity, both physically and emotionally, as Justin Sawyer started the first period by dropping the gloves for the third time this year, which seemed to provide a spark for the Rush. Moments later, that would come to fruition, as Justin Faryna would light up the lamp to put Rapid City on top 1-0 11:16 into the contest. The lead, however, would be short lived. Exactly 36 seconds later former Rush defenseman Jamie VanderVeeken would set up Andrew Fournier for his second goal this campaign, knotting up the game at one goal a-piece. Calamity would ensue towards the end of the first frame, as Scott Wray would go to the box for four minutes for roughing and elbowing penalties. While it would seem that Brampton would take a lopsided amount of time on the powerplay into the locker room session and consequently the second period, Rob Collins would negate at least two minutes of the Brampton advantage due to his own hooking penalty.
The tone for the second period was set in the 1:45 of 4-on-4 hockey that began the frame. Discipline came at a premium in the second, as 12 additional penalties were assessed to bring the game total to 32 minutes. Aside from the lack of discipline, the end to end action was hectic. On one play alone, Andrew Fournier broke towards the net of Tim Boron, and after making a spectacular kick save, set up a breakaway play for Kyle Stroh. Stroh shot a backhander over the blocker of Grant Rollheiser to put the Rush up 2-1 more than halfway through the contest. As the game progressed, the lack of discipline on the ice ultimately led the Rush to carrying over power play time into the final frame of action.
The main story of the third period was the power play. Of their nine tries on the night, Rapid City had three of them in the third act, and finally capitalized on an opportunity with 5:58 left in the game. Konrad Reeder would get a deflection and knock a rebound past Rollheiser for his third goal in as many games, with Tristin Llewellyn and Jesse Schultz helping out on the play. The Rush would officially erase all doubt and end the game with Winston Day Chief scoring the final goal of the contest exactly 58 seconds later, due to smart passing by Jared Brown and Eric Giosa, bringing us to the 4-1 final in favor of the Rush.
Konrad Reeder would earn first star honors for his efforts in the game, followed by Tim Boron at number two with 34 saves on the evening. Kyle Stroh would take third star recognition, having notched his first two points of the season. Both teams were assessed a combined 56 penalty minutes on the game, with both teams going on the power play a combined 16 times. Reeder, Schultz, Brown, Brannon, and Llewellyn have all recorded a point in each game this season, and are on active three game point streaks. The Rush have won three straight to start the year, and are tied with the Denver Cutthroats for first in the CHL with 6 points. They face Brampton once again in a rematch tomorrow night, before squaring off several times in the last week of the season.
Other Rush News:
Season tickets for the 2013-14 season are available now by calling the Rush office at 716-7825.
Stay informed on Rush happenings through the official Rapid City Rush team website, www.RapidCityRush.com.