BOISE, Idaho – The Idaho Steelheads (22-11-3) navigated adverse waters and earned the full two points, taking down the Toledo Walleye (23-9-4) with a 4-3 shootout win on Friday night in front of a soldout crowd at CenturyLink Arena, the fifth sellout of the season.
The Walleye scored the game’s first goal at 16:03 thanks to a shot from forward Matt Register at the blue line to take an early 1-0 lead. Despite the lead for the Walleye, the Steelheads held control for much of the first period, which led momentum into the second frame.
In the second period, the Steelheads scored three-unanswered goals to answer the opening bell. At 5:06, Steelheads forward Robbie Payne crashed the net on a play that looked to be across the line, but forward Elgin Pearce helped ensure the goal went in to tie the game at 1-1. Then, Steelheads forward Kyle Schempp stole a pass in the offensive zone and slipped a shot off a defenseman’s skate at 7:44, taking a 2-1 lead. At 16:39, Steelheads forward Spencer Naas received an exchange of passes to slice into the back of the net and double the advantage, 3-1. Walleye forward A.J. Jenks scored late in the second period at 19:40 on the power play to draw within one, 3-2.
Walleye forward Hunter Smith re-directed a shot at 4:30 of the third period coming from the blue line to tie the game at 3-3. The Steelheads killed two of three 5-on-3 penalty kills throughout the night including one in the final four minutes of the game to force overtime.
After a thrilling extra period, Steelheads defenseman Brady Norrish opened the shootout in the first round with a goal to take a quick advantage. Jenks scored in the second round to force an eventual decisive fifth round, where Steelheads forward Steve McParland secured the 4-3 shootout victory with a goal. Steelheads goaltender Tomas Sholl (14-4-0) staved off 27 of 30 shots in the win with four of five in the shootout, and Walleye netminder Kaden Fulcher (10-3-3) halted 33 of 36 shots in the shootout loss with three of five saves in the shootout.
The Steelheads and Walleye finish their three-game weekend on Saturday, Jan. 12 at 7:10 p.m. from CenturyLink Arena. Tickets are available by calling 208-383-0080 or going to idahosteelheads.com. Coverage begins at 6:50 p.m. on 1350AM KTIK as well as 7:00 p.m. on CableOne Ch. 72 and ECHL TV.
Single-game tickets and season ticket packages are on sale, with full-season packages starting as low as $300 per seat. Contact the Idaho Steelheads at 208-383-0080 for more information or log on to idahosteelheads.com.