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COLORADO FIRES BACK WITH GARBOWSKYS HAT TRICK

Saturday, January 21st
COLORADO FIRES BACK WITH GARBOWSKYS HAT TRICK

(RAPID CITY, SD) – The Rapid City Rush rallied for a 3-2 lead at the end of the second thanks to Terrence Wallin’s pair of goals, but the Colorado Eagles fired back with Matt Garbowsky’s third period natural hat trick to even the three game set at one win a side with a 6-3 victory on Saturday night.

Colorado struck twice in the first period to take a 2-0 lead into the intermission. Casey Pierro-Zabotel opened Colorado’s lead at 10:45 of the first when he took a rebound off of a blocked Shawn St-Amant shot and sent it by Rush net-minder Adam Morrison to give the Eagles a 1-0 lead (St-Amant and Jake Marto notched the assists). Jake Marto got his second point of the game on the second Eagles power play of the game, firing from the blue line off of a Casey Pierro-Zabotel faceoff win to put the Eagles up 2-0 with 1:40 left in the first frame (Pierro-Zabotel earned his second point of the night with the assist).

The Rush stormed back with three unanswered goals in the second period, starting with two from Terrence Wallin 2:20 apart. Wallin’s first came off of a rebound from a Josh MacDonald shot at 6:11 of the second, with Wallin cashing in on his shot from the near faceoff circle by Colorad goaltender Clarke Saunders to cut the deficit to 2-1 (MacDonald and Ryan Walters assisted). Wallin struck again when he batted a rebound off of a Michael Young shot out of mid-air by Saunders to square the game at 2-2 with 8:31 left in the second (Young and MacDonald assisted, with the latter earning his second of the night). Mark Cooper put the Rush on top on the team’s third power play of the night, finishing a pass from Ryan Misiak on the back door to give the Rush a 3-2 advantage with 3:47 left in the frame (Misiak extended his point streak to five games with the assist, and Nick Miglio earned the secondary on the goal).

Colorado fired right back with four unanswered goals in the third to overtake the Rush Matt Register tied the game on a blue line shot through traffic that beat Morrison to square the game at 3-3 at 4:59 of the final period (Luke Salazar and Casey Pierro-Zabotel assisted, his second of the game). Matt Garbowsky began his run for a natural hat trick at 8:27 of the period when he fired a wrist shot from the far faceoff circle of the Rush zone by Morrison’s blocker to give the Eagles a 4-3 lead (Matt Register and Clarke Saunders assisted). Garbowsky struck again on the final Rush power play of the game, when he intercepted a blue line pass and went on a breakway, finishing with a backhander by Morrison to give Colorado a 5-3 advantage with 3:57 left in the game (the goal was unassisted). On the final Eagles power play of the game within the last 20 seconds, Garbowsky deflected a blue line pass by Morrison in close range to complete his hat trick and seal the win for Colorado, 6-3 the final to earn a split of the first two games of this three-game set (Jake Marto and Casey Pierro-Zabotel assisted, with the latter finishing with a five-point night).

Adam Morrison suffered his first loss in regulation against the Eagles in five matchups, stopping 25 of 31 shots in the defeat (6-6-3).

Both teams rematch on “Pucks and Paws Day” tomorrow afternoon, with puck drop slated for 3:05 p.m. MST.

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