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RUSH UNABLE TO SOLVE SAUNDERS

Saturday, February 13th
RUSH UNABLE TO SOLVE SAUNDERS

(WINDSOR, CO) – Teigan Zahn and Kyle Ostrow brought the offense for the home side, but Clarke Saunders stole the show with his 23-save shutout over the Rapid City Rush, powering the Colorado Eagles to a 2-0 win, claiming the first-ever Crystal Cup between the rivals.

Both rivals remained scoreless for a vast majority of the opening period, but the Eagles would eventually open the scoring entries on an unfortunate turn of events for the Rush. With 3:25 left in the opening period, Rush, on their second power play of the game, surrendered a shorthanded breakaway to Kyle Kraemer of the Eagles. Kraemer missed on his breakaway, but got the puck behind the Rush net and centered it for an oncoming Teigan Zahn, who sent the puck by Rush netminder Sam Marotta to afford his club a 1-0 lead heading into the first intermission (Kraemer and Sean Zimmerman earned the assists).

The story of the second period was the Rush penalty kill, which killed off all three power plays they faced in the frame, including a double-minor power play awarded to Colorado after Lindsay Sparks was called for high-sticking. At the conclusion of the 4-minute advantage, which was cut short due to a Colorado penalty, the Rush had successfully killed off 19 straight penalties, the longest streak of the season, dating back to February 5th at Quad City. Both teams left the middle act unscathed, setting up a 20-minute race to the finish in the third.

Colorado would add insurance to their score with 6:50 left in the game. The Eagles would catch the Rush unable to get the puck out of their zone, and Kyle Ostrow would bat a puck through traffic by Marotta to double his team’s count to 2-0 (Sean Ringrose would earn the lone helper). Marotta was pulled from the Rush net late in the game, but the visiting side was unable to solve Clarke Saunders, who held on to earn his Eagles the 2-0 win, and his first shutout of the season (23 saves). With the win, Colorado clinches the first-ever battle for the Crystal Cup Rivalry Series.

Sam Marotta suffered the loss despite stopping 30 of 32 shots on net (3-8-0 between Elmira and Rapid City).

The Rush look ahead to their next matchup, a road matinee showdown against their West Division rivals, the Utah Grizzlies, on Monday, February 15th. Puck drop is slated for 1:35 p.m. MST at the Maverik Center.

Other Rush News:

Join Rush Nation for only $10 per game! Call the Rush office at 716-7825 for details, and stay informed on all Rush happenings this season through the official Rapid City Rush team website, www.RapidCityRush.com, and the Rapid City Rush mobile app, available on iTunes and Google Play.

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