MUSKEGON, MI- The Chicago Steel scored two goals in the final three minutes of regulation, erasing a 5-4 deficit and knocking off the Muskegon Lumberjacks 6-5 at Mercy Health Arena Friday.
After playing ten consecutive road games to begin the season, Muskegon looked like they would kick off their home schedule in style. However, Chicago got goals from Josh Doan and Sean Ferrell with 2:43 to play and 1:20 to play, and it was Chicago who skated away with victory.
In a back-and-forth game that featured four ties and three lead changes, Muskegon got a strong performance from Tanner Kelly, who scored two goals for the Jacks. Kelly and David Hymovitch each scored goals in the first period, giving Muskegon a 2-1 lead after one.
In the second, Chicago scored three quick goals to take control of the game. The Steel got tallies from Erik Middendorf and Joe Miller in the first minute of the second, and then Matthew Gleason made it 4-2 Steel 3:07 into the frame.
Muskegon would fight back to tie it going into period three, scoring two power-play goals in the second half of the second stanza.
First, Jack Williams deflected a Jacob Guevin shot past goaltender Nick Haas. Then, Kelly scored his second of the night after Danil Gushchin made a nifty pass to find the open Kelly.
Dylan Wendt broke the 4-4 tie with 11:14 to play in the third, sniping a backhander past Haas to give Muskegon the 5-4 lead.
However, the Steel rallied to win it late, stealing two points from the Jacks and boosting their point total to a league-best 20. The Steel extended their winning streak to eight games with the win.
Goaltender Jan Skorpik took the loss in net, stopping 16 of 22 Steel shots. Muskegon peppered Haas with 36 shots, but Haas improved to 5-0-0.
Muskegon and Chicago rematch tomorrow night at Mercy Health Arena.
Muskegon goals: Kelly (2,3), Hymovitch (3), Williams (3), Wendt (2)
Muskegon assists: Alex Gagne (10), Bradley Marek (1), Cristophe Tellier (5,6), Guevin (5,6), Gushchin (9), Davis Pennington (6), Williams (4)