MUSKEGON, MI- The Muskegon Lumberjacks erased a 2-1 deficit courtesy of three third-period goals, ousting the Youngstown Phantoms 4-2 on Thursday. The win for Muskegon ends a five-game losing streak and puts the Jacks back in the win column for the first time in February.
The win is somewhat bittersweet for the Lumberjacks, who lost another player to injury tonight. Trailing 1-0 midway through the second period despite a wide advantage in shots on goal, Muskegon’s John Druskinis suffered a scary injury that stopped the game for around 20 minutes while medical staff attended to him. Druskinis was struck by a puck while standing on the bench and needed help leaving the ice after being stabilized.
Already playing without Danil Gushchin, Luke Krys and Ben Strinden, Muskegon showed resilience after the injury, tying the game on Hank Kempf’s goal just 40 seconds after the game restarted.
Youngstown took the lead back just three minutes later, however, and led 2-1 after two periods.
The third, however, belonged to Muskegon, as the Jacks tallied three unanswered to erase the deficit.
While Druskinis was knocked out of the game, Tom Sinclair made his return from injury and scored the game-tying goal 4:07 into the third.
Just three minutes later, Cam Berg broke out of a one-goal-in-nine-game slump, notching a shorthanded, game-winning goal, his 18th of the season.
Youngstown made a strong push to tie the game after Berg’s goal, but goalie Nate Reid came up with several stunning saves to preserve the Muskegon win. Reid improved to 5-4-0 with the 26-save win.
Jack Williams put an exclamation point on the victory, scoring into the empty net with one second left to make the final score 4-2 Jacks.
Muskegon and Youngstown rematch tomorrow night at 7:00pm at Mercy Health Arena, and limited tickets are now on sale.
Muskegon goals: Kempf (2), Sinclair (3), Berg (18), Williams (9)
Muskegon assists: Kyle Aucoin (2), Jacob Guevin (18), Davis Pennington (15), Sinclair (5)