The Sioux Falls Stampede's recently discovered formula of opportunistic offense and stout defense at home continued to prove flawless as they defeated the Indiana Ice 4-2 at the Sioux Falls Arena Friday night. Four different played tallied goals for Sioux Falls while goaltender Charlie Lindgren had another fantastic night in net, blocking 23 of 25 shots for the Herd (3-2-0). Sioux Falls outshot the Ice 43-25 on the night.
Zach Aman and Bo Pieper scored for Indiana, while goalie Mattias Sodeqvist let in four goals on a whopping 43 shots. The Stampede had not beaten the Ice (2-4-0) since March 26, 2010 in Indianapolis and has now won three contests in a row after falling in their first two.
"We took a cross-check here and a hit from behind there," said head coach Cary Eades, whose team improved to an undefeated 2-0-0 at home. "We played very disciplined hockey."
Stampede leading-scorer Kyle Schempp put the Herd on top first with a beautiful display during the Ice's first power play of the game. Schempp snatched the puck away from the Indiana defense and backhanded it past Soderqvist's left side, the forward's fourth goal of the young season and the first shorthanded goal for the team of the season.
"It (the goal) started the momentum for us and I think it killed their game a little bit," said second year defenseman Matt Van Voorhis. "From there we just rolled."
Indiana goaltender Mattias Soderqvist was pelted by a barrage of shots in an opening period dominated by Sioux Falls, stopping 14 of 15 Herd attempts shot at him. A mind-boggling Lindgren stop towards the end of the period assured the Stampede went into the locker room with the 1-0 lead.
"He (Lindgren) made a big save," said Eades, adding "It could have been a different hockey game."
Minnesota native C.J. Franklin doubled the Herd's margin less than three minutes into a second period marred by Indiana mistakes and lapses in concentration. Preventing Stampede scoring chances was one thing clearly not on the Ice's list of priorities going into the period, as a lack of discipline handed Sioux Falls four power plays with the Herd scoring on two of them. Sam Rothstein was responsible for the first, putting a rebound through Soderqvist while winger Tony Calderone took credit for the second power play score with a nifty one-timer from Connor Valesano, Calderone's second goal of the year. Ice center Tyler Pham was ejected at 14:33 after his second penalty of the period, this time a checking from behind call.
An Ice goal a mere 10 seconds into the final period gave Indiana a glimmer of hope, though the Stampede would clamp down the rest of the period, thanks to rock solid defense and more acrobatic goaltending from Lindgren. The Herd finished the night 2 for 10 on the power play while Indiana came up empty in three attempts.
The Stampede return to the Arena tomorrow night to face the Fargo Force at 7:05 pm. Tickets are still available at the Sioux Falls Arena Box Office. The first 1,000 fans through the doors receive a free Stampede Draw String bag. Doors open at 6:15 PM.