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RUSH THUMP MAVERICKS, 7-3

Saturday, December 11th
RUSH THUMP MAVERICKS, 7-3

(RAPID CITY, S.D.) - Stephen Baylis scored twice, Logan Nelson had three assists and Ryan Valentini picked up a goal and an assist in his return from injured reserve as the Rapid City Rush thumped the Kansas City Mavericks, 7-3, Friday night at The Monument Ice Arena.

The Rush opened the scoring less than five minutes into the first period when Nelson grabbed a loose puck in the neutral zone and sped into the attacking end. He left a drop pass for Alec Butcher who dragged the puck from his forehand to his backhand and flipped it past Danil Chechelev, putting Rapid City on top, 1-0.

Later, with the teams skating 4-on-4, Kansas City turned the puck over in its own zone and Baylis found himself alone in front of the net. He fired a wrist shot through Chechelev and the lead grew to 2-0.

Early in the second period, Valentini stickhandled his way to the right post and left a pass for Kenton Helgesen at the top of the crease. He jammed the puck home, pushing the lead to 3-0. The Rush added to it in the final minutes of the middle frame after Baylis drew a penalty on a breakaway and was granted a penalty shot that he cashed in on to make it 4-0.

A Tommy Muck goal put the Mavericks on the board in the waning moments of the second period, but Rapid City added to its lead once again on the power play early in the third. Butcher put a shot on net that hit bodies in front but Brett Gravelle gathered the rebound and sent it home, making the score 5-1.

Kansas City responded with a pair of power play goals, first from Ryan Harrison then by Lane Scheidl but the Rush got the capper late in the third when Calder Brooks hit Valentini in the neutral zone and he barreled in on the attack. Valentini fired a wrist shot that went bar down and into the net, pushing the score to its 7-3 final.

Valentini and Butcher each had a goal and an assist, Nelson dished out three assists and Baylis scored his team leading 12th and 13th goals of the season. The Rush improved to 9-10-1-2 in the win while Kansas City fell to 8-11-1-0.

Rapid City will again host Kansas City on Saturday night. It’s Rush Gives Back Night and the Teddy Bear Toss and every ticket in the building will be $25. The Rush will donate $5 from each ticket sold to Sacred Mountain Retreat Center and United Way of the Black Hills and the night’s presenting sponsor, Black Hills Energy, will match the Rush’s donation up to $10,000. Puck drop is scheduled for 7:05 PM at The Monument Ice Arena.

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