It was a fight—but not to the finish. Despite outshooting the Youngstown Phantoms 36-20 in regulation and 4-1 in the four-on-four overtime, the Indiana Ice could not finish scoring chances consistently enough and fell 3-2 in a shootout loss.
The visitors scored on both of their shootout attempts and the Ice failed to score.
It took Mikhail Plotnikov’s goal 2:56 before the final horn to send the game into overtime and it salvaged a point Sunday at Banker’s Life Fieldhouse. The Russian forward circled the Youngstown net to bury Indy’s only even strength goal. Mitch Hults and Bryan Yim earned assists before the extra skating began.
Indiana skated into the affair with a revamped roster with seven players having logged less than 10-games in the United States Hockey League.
“It was my first home game and I was a little nervous at first,” commented Indy defenseman and Carmel native, Grant Hutton. “I wanted to stay on the pace of the game. You can’t think about making a mistake because if you do, that can make the mistake happen.”
Despite outshooting the Phantoms 13-8 in the middle frame, the Ice headed to the second intermission trailing 2-1. The second period’s only score was when Alexander Dahl had the weak side of goaltender Dalton Izyk net wide open and he banged home the tie-breaker. Izyk was busy watching his stick-side where Austin Cangelosi was stationed near the crease.
The game turned chippy in the final two minutes of the second period. Marcus McCrea was sent to the penalty box for checking from behind and a 10-minute misconduct. In the final 14 seconds, his team mate Cangelosi was whistled for the same infraction and given a five-minute major and a game-misconduct.
The pair of penalties gave the hosts over four minutes of skating with an extra skater to start the third period. They managed only one shot on goal.
All the scoring in the first period came when Indiana was skating with the man advantage. After the visitor’s Tommy Davis was sent to the penalty box in the game’s fifth minute, Indy let his team mate Dan Renouf get behind the defense to score a shorthanded goal at the 5:12 mark.
The lead lasted only 17 seconds when Matt Krug snapped a wrister past Youngstown netminder Sean Romeo. Krug’s second goal of the season was set up by Austin Hervey, who won a faceoff in the offensive zone.