Pittsburgh, PA—The Sioux Falls Stampede kicked off their 20th anniversary season in exciting fashion Thursday night at the USHL Fall Classic. Artem Ivanyuzhenkov’s goal 3:43 into overtime lifted the Herd to a 6-5 overtime victory over Central Illinois.
The Herd rallied from a 5-3 third period deficit to tie the game and force overtime before eventually winning the game. Jami Krannila and Max Crozier tallied a goal and an assist each in the victory while Pittsburgh native Chad Veltri earned his first career USHL win with 25 saves.
The game was tied 2-2 heading into the third before an explosion of goals from both teams took place. Trevor Janicke gave the Flying Aces the lead at the 10 minute mark with a power play goal. Just over a minute later the Aces were back on the power play and again Janicke connected to give Central Illinois a 4-2 edge. The Herd would tally a power play goal of their own at 12:39 when Anthony Romano and Cade Borchardt worked to set up Jared Westcott in the slot who moved in andwristed a shot past Flying Aces goaltender Mitchell Gibson.
The celebration would be short-lived as the Aces regained their two goal edge at 13:47 when Colby Enns one-timed a pass into the back of the Stampede net for a 5-3 lead. The Stampede would not be intimated though and pulled back within a goal just 20 seconds later when Ryan Sullivan found Anthony Romano who wristed the puck into the net. Minutes later the Herd would go on another power play and once again would convert. Jami Krannila sent a pass into the slot for Max Crozier who blasted the puck into the goal to tie the game.
That would eventually force overtime where the Stampede were able to draw a penalty and put themselves on their seventh power play of the night. They would not disappoint. Moving the puck around well in the offensive zone, Krannila sent a pass from the right circle to the front of the net where Ivanyuzhenkov tapped the puck through the pads of Gibson to lift the Stampede to victory.
The Herd outshot the Aces 17-5 in the third period, 5-2 in the overtime and 38-30 in the game. Sioux Falls finished an impressive 4-for-7 on the power play marking the second straight year they started the season hot on the power play. Last season, the Herd posted five power play goals in an opening night win at Fargo.
Sioux Falls returns to action on Saturday when they face the U.S. Under-18 Development Program at 1 PM (Central).