Anchorage, AK (5/1/14) – Gaelan Patterson knocked home a loose puck from the left edge of the crease Thursday night, lifting the Idaho Steelheads to a dramatic, 1-0 victory in Game 1 of the best-of-seven ECHL Kelly Cup Western Conference playoff series in Anchorage.
The Steelheads lead the series, one game to none.
Idaho goaltender Josh Robinson denied all 47 shots thrown at him by the homestanding Aces to deliver his second professional postseason shutout. He tied an ECHL record with 83 saves in a four-overtime win on Monday night in Boise to send Idaho to the semifinals, giving him 130 saves over his past two games.
Idaho had three big chances in the first period to score first, but Gerald Coleman denied them all in net for Alaska, including a short breakaway for Anchorage native William Rapuzzi. The script was flipped in the second as the Aces dominated, out-shooting Idaho 16-2 in the frame but Robinson kept the puck out of the net for the Steelheads to send the game to the third period scoreless.
In the third, the pace quickened, resulting in scoring chances each way. Coleman stoned Justin Mercier on another breakaway and Robinson gobbled up a backhand attempt off the stick of John Ramage to send the game to overtime with no goals on the board.
The teams played through a 4-on-4 opportunity in the opening moments of overtime before the Steelheads broke through. Forward Brock Montgomery came away with a loose puck along the left-wing wall and passed the puck to the center point to defenseman Eamonn McDermott. McDermott quickly slid to his left, changing the angle for a shot from the high slot. Coleman made the initial save but, during the ensuing scramble, Patterson jabbed it home from the left edge of the crease at 6:09 of the overtime session to end the game in favor of Idaho.
Patterson's goal was his fourth of the postseason, tying him for the team lead in that regard and also extending his goal streak to four straight contests for Idaho. The game marked the 28th time in its ECHL history that Idaho has gone beyond regulation - second-most in league history.
Coleman was outstanding in defeat for the Aces, denying 26 of 27 shots including a number of difficult saves during regulation. Neither team scored on the power play, Idaho going 0-4 and Alaska going 0-3
Game 2 is in Anchorage Friday night. Puck drop is 9:15 (Mtn) and can be heard live on KTIK (1350 AM) or watched on CableOne (ch. 17) in the Treasure Valley. The team will also host free “watch parties” at the SportZone inside CenturyLink Arena for all of the road games. Doors open one hour prior to puck drop (8 PM).
Tickets for Games 3 and 4 in Boise will go on sale at the CenturyLink Arena box office on Tuesday or by logging on to www.idahosteelheads.com.
COORS OFFENSIVE PLAYER OF THE GAME – Gaelan Patterson (GWG)
CENTURYLINK THREE STARS:1) Josh Robinson (ID)2) Gerald Coleman (AK)3) Gaelan Patterson (ID)
Group outings at a Steelheads game are a great way to gather friends, colleagues, or co-workers for a fun night out in downtown Boise. Ticket prices are discounted and you can get a Pepsi, Double-R Ranch Hot Dog, and bag of Tim’s Cascade Chips with each ticket. Contact the Steelheads front office at 208.383.0080 or log on to www.idahosteelheads.com for more information.