Power Play Propels Monsters To Victory in San Antonio
Three power play goals helped the Lake Erie Monsters (29-29-0-9) earn a 5-3 win in San Antonio over the Rampage (27-33-3-6) Tuesday night at the AT&T Center. The victory snapped the Monsters three-game winless streak, and included goals from Michael Schumacher, Mike Sgarbossa, Stefan Elliott, Karl Stollery, and Joey Hishon. Sami Aittokallio had the win in net for the Monsters, who now have 67 points through 67 games. The Monsters are eight points out of the eighth playoff spot which is currently held by the Charlotte Checkers. The Monsters have nine games to play, while Charlotte has seven games remaining.
Michael Schumacher gave the Monsters a 1-0 lead 3:42 into the first period when he launched a wrist shot from the top of the right circle to beat San Antonio goalie Michael Houser stick-side. David van der Gulik and Colin Smith assisted on Schumacher’s 10th goal of the season. The Monsters led 1-0 through one period, and outshot San Antonio 17-6 in the opening frame.
Mike Sgarbossa stretched the Monsters lead to 2-0 with a power play goal, sending a puck top-shelf from in front of the San Antonio net at 2:46 of the second period. Sgarbossa’s goal was his fifth of the season, assisted by Schumacher and Smith. After the Monsters went ahead by a pair, San Antonio would score twice to tie the game when Joey Crabb scored at 6:13 of the second period and Matt Gilroy scored at 10:24 of the second period on a power play.
The Monsters regained the two-goal lead before the second period could end. Stefan Elliott scored on a wrist shot from the slot with the Monsters on a five-on-three power play at 17:18 of the second period; the goal was his 14th of the season, and was assisted by Andrew Agozzino and Mark Olver. Just 18 seconds later, Karl Stollery scored on a shot from the blue line for his seventh goal of the season. Stollery’s power play goal gave the Monsters a 4-2 lead, and was assisted by Joey Hishon and Smith.
Hishon scored a goal from the slot on a wrist shot following a rush up the ice to give the Monsters a 5-2 lead at 12:18 of the third period; the goal was his 10th and was assisted by Markus Lauridsen and Guillaume Desbiens. San Antoino’s Jared Gomes added a goal in the final three minutes to make the score 5-3, but it was not enough to stop the Monsters.
Sami Aittokallio is 13-12-3 in net for the Monsters after stopping 28 of 31 shots. Houser stopped 29 of 34 shots for San Antonio; he is 10-12-1.
The Monsters are back in action Friday at 8:30 PM Eastern as they continue their road trip against the Texas Stars. Friday’s game airs live on ESPN 850 WKNR.
NOTES: Olver’s assist gives him a Monsters season-best eight-game point streak; he has three goals and eight assists for 11 points over that span… van der Gulik’s assist gives him a four-game point streak; he has three goals and two assists for five points over that span… Agozzino’s assist gives him a five-game point streak; he has a goal and six assists for seven points over his last five games… Schumacher has five goals in his last seven games… The Monsters are 11-17-0-6 on the road this season and are 1-0-0-0 in April… The Monsters are 8-9-0-0 against the West Division, and 1-2-0-0 against San Antonio, who they will meet again on Saturday… The Monsters were 3-5 on the power play Tuesday, and 5-6 on the penalty kill.