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Rush vs Tulsa-Friday Night November 2

Rush vs Tulsa-Friday Night November 2

Rapid City Rush win third in a row Friday night


RC Rush Release - November 3, 2018

TULSA, Okla. - After 65 minutes of hockey, Rapid City Rush Captain Riley Weselowski five-holed Tulsa Oilers goalie Evan Fitzpatrick in the bottom of the ninth round of the shootout to give the Rush the second point, a third consecutive win, and points in six straight games with a 3-2 win on Friday night. 

For a third straight game, and second in as many nights against the Oilers, the Rush provided the first goal of the contest.  With just 1:55 gone by in the action, Josh Elmes took a faceoff win from Andrew Radjenovic in the offensive zone off the blue line and wrapped around the net.  Elmes barely squeaked the puck by Oilers goaltender Evan Fitzpatrick to give the Rush an early 1-0 lead (Radjenovic had the lone assist).  Tulsa then scored twice in the last four minutes of the period to tie and eventually overtake the Rush heading into the locker room after 20 minutes. With 3:54 remaining in the first, Terrance Amarosa rifled a shot from the far wall of the Rush zone and through traffic on net.  The puck got deflected by a body in front and sped past Rush net-minder Michael Bitzer to square the game at 1-1 (Ryan Tesink and Scott Moldenhauer assisted).  Austin Poganski finished a relentless offensive zone shift with a one-timer from Amarosa again for his second goal in as many nights, giving Tulsa a 2-1 lead with 32 seconds left in the first (Amarosa and Chris Forney assisted).

he Oilers hammered the Rush in the second period with a 20-6 shot differential, but couldn’t find a third goal in the contest thanks to the Rush defense and Michael Bitzer in net. Michael Turner was ejected for an altercation in the second period, leading to a major power play for the Oilers that was thwarted by the Rush penalty-kill. Despite nearly all the action of the frame coming in the Rush zone, Garrett Klotz found the strength to square the game heading into the final period. With 2:21 left in the second, Willem Nong-Lambert and Shaquille Merasty kept the offensive drive alive in the near corner of the Oilers zone. Merasty, from behind the net, found Klotz in front, who hacked numerous times at a loose puck in front of the crease. He finally squeaked it by Fitzpatrick and tied the game at 2-2 with his second of the season (Merasty and Nong-Lambert assisted). For a second night in the series, 60 minutes was not enough to determine a winner, and overtime was on the horizon.

The extra five minutes was also not enough to end the game, so to the shootout we went.  The Rush were on the ropes twice in the shootout, once in the bottom of the third, and once in the bottom of the seventh round.  Pierre-Luc Mercier kept the game going with a backhander in the bottom of the third round to send the shootout to sudden death rounds, and Darby Llewellyn perpetuated the game with his top-shelf strike in the bottom of the seventh.  It took nine rounds, but Rush Captain Riley Weselowski ended it with a five-hole shot that beat Fitzpatrick to get the win for the Rush by a 3-2 score.
Michael Bitzer earned the win, his second past 60 minutes this season, stopping 41 of 43 shots, and 7 of 9 in the shootout (2-0-0-1).

The Rush conclude their “three-in-three” this weekend against Tulsa with game three tomorrow night, November 3rd.  Puck drop for the game is slated for 6:05 p.m. MST.



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