PORTLAND, Maine – The Rapid City Rush, proud affiliate of the NHL’s Calgary Flames, came from behind to defeat the Maine Mariners 6-4 at Cross Insurance Arena on Saturday night.
The Mariners opened the scoring when Wyllum Deveaux deflected a shot from Ethan Ritchie. The goal stopped Matt Radomsky’s streak without a goal allowed at 74:50, the longest streak of the season for the Rush.
Rapid City found their offense in a big way in the remainder of the first period. Brett Gravelle tied the game 11:16 into the first, en route to a two-goal first period. Then Alex Aleardi capitalized on a feed from Blake Bennett to give the Rush the lead. Aleardi also scored twice in the game, to bring him to 99 career ECHL goals.
After Gravelle’s second goal of the game extended the first period lead, Cameron Askew took the puck of the near half wall and scored with 50 seconds left in the first period to put Maine within one.
The Mariners would go on to tie the game early in the second when William Provost tapped in a rebound from a blueline wrist-shot from Gabriel Chicoine.
Kyle Keyser stopped all 18 shots he faced from the Rush in the second period, and his performance spurned the offense to another goal with less than a minute left. Brooklyn Kalmikov blasted a one-timer set up by Curtis Hall and Askew to give Maine a 4-3 lead with 51 seconds left in the second period.
Entering the game just 1-16-0 when trailing at the end of two periods, the Rush went down 5-on-3 for 1:56 out of the chute. The Rush penalty kill stood tall going 4-for-4 on the night and staving off the Mariners’ chance to extend the lead.
In a turn of fate, the Rush then had 1:47 of 5-on-3 attack time within a minute after the kill. Aleardi’s second goal of the evening tied the game for the Rush.
Sitting on two assists already, Simon Boyko stationed himself net front to score on a Riley Ginnell assist just two-and-a-half minutes later. Boyko enjoyed a career-high three points in the win.
James Hardie scored his ninth of the year on an empty net to ice the Rapid City win.
The Rush victory puts the heat on Allen to collect at least one standings point or else Rapid City will overtake the Americans for the final playoff spot in the Mountain Division. Rapid City is now 11-12-1 on the road this season, just two games shy of hitting last season’s road win total.