SLAPSHOT POSTGAME COVERAGE PRESENTED BY ASSURANT SOLUTIONS
RUSH CLINCH HOME-ICE ADVANTAGE IN UNFORTUNATE END IN SHOOTOUT LOSS
(ALLEN, TX) – Dallas Ehrhardt and Kale Kerbashian both scored against their former club, and Danny Battochio held on for 37 saves in regulation and overtime, but the Rapid City Rush could not secure the second point in the game, as the Allen Americans won 3-2 in a shootout. The point earned in the shootout loss secures home ice for the Rush in the opening round of the 2015 ECHL Kelly Cup Playoffs.
It only took the Americans 46 seconds to get on the board and open the evening’s scoring entries. Justin Baker, who was just named to the ECHL’s All-Rookie team yesterday, carried the puck from one end to the other and beat Rush netminder Danny Battochio on the glove side to give the Americans the early 1-0 lead within the first minute of play.
The Rush came out firing in the second period, holding the Americans to no shots through the first six-and-a-half minutes of play, but it was the Americans that would capitalize on their first chance of the period. With 6:33 gone by in the second, Greger Hanson tallied his 27th goal of the season, finishing a Chad Costello pass over Battochio’s blocker on the far post from the near side of the Rush zone, doubling the lead of home side to 2-0. Down, but not out, the Rush would find offense from former Americans players, and eventually even things up. Starting the Rush rally was Dallas Ehrhardt, taking a clean faceoff win from Dylan Clarke deep into the attacking zone, rifling a shot past Allen goaltender Joel Rumpel to halve the Rush deficit to 2-1 just 33 seconds later at 7:06 of the second. Exactly 1:16 later, Kale Kerbashian beat the Americans defense and sent the puck through Rumpel’s five-hole to tie the game at 2-2 at 8:22 of the period.
Neither team would be able to solve the game in regulation, leading to an eventual overtime period and a shootout that would follow. In a bizarre twist in the shootout, Chad Costello scored in the bottom of the second round, losing control of the puck and scoring on Battochio with a backhanded shot. It appeared that Costello halted the puck on his attempt, but his shot counted, being the only goal scored in the shootout, ultimately leading the Americans to securing the second point in a 3-2 win.
Danny Battochio stopped 37 of 39 shots in regulation and overtime, and stopped 3 of 4 shooters in the shootout (25-18-4).
The Rush close out the regular season tomorrow in a rematch against the Americans, with puck drop slated for 6:05 p.m. MST at the Allen Events Center.
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