It took almost 90 minutes for the Fairbanks Ice Dogs to get the puck past Kenai River goalie Nils Wallstrom, but it wasn’t enough as the Brown Bears pulled out a 4-3 overtime victory Saturday night at the Big Dipper Ice Arena.
Wallstrom blanked the Ice Dogs 3-0 in the first game of their Alaska Airlines Club 49 Cup series on Friday night, and came on in relief of Bryant Marks to start the second period on Saturday.
He kept the Ice Dogs off the scoreboard in the second period Saturday, but his shutout streak ended at 88 minutes and 51 seconds when Julian Recine found a way to get the puck into the net to give Fairbanks a 3-2 lead.
However, that lead didn’t stand up as Joe Manning tied the score at 13:04 of the third period and Carson Triggs netted the game-winner at 1:44 of overtime.
Triggs stole the puck near center ice and went in on Ice Dogs goalie Kayden Hargraves uncontested and lit the lamp from close range to give the Brown Bears their only lead of the night and a sweep of the weekend series The overtime loss enabled the Ice Dogs to pick up one point in the NAHL Midwest Division standings. Fairbanks is still in third place, one point ahead of Kenai River. The third- and seventh place teams are separated by just five points.
The Ice Dogs got off to a great start when Colin Goff broke free right in front of Kenai River starting goalie Bryant Marks and popped the puck in the net just 25 seconds into the game.
Goff ’s linemates, Kole Altergott and McCabe Dvorak, earned assists on the game’s first goal.
The Browns Bears tied the score four minutes later when Bryce Monrean fired a shot that got through a maze of players in front of Hargraves and found its way to the back of the net.
The Ice Dogs regained the lead with a power-play goal at 15:32 of the opening stanza. Tyler Herzberg did a nifty spin move in the right faceoff circle and rifled a shot past Marks.
Kenai River scored the only goal of the second period when team captain Noah Holt scored his third goal of the series on a breakaway at the 5:05 mark.
Fairbanks, winless in its last four games, returns to action when it hosts the Springfield Jr. Blues on Friday and Saturday at the Big Dipper.