The Ontario Reign jumped out to a 2-0 lead through the first half of the game, before conceding four unanswered goals, falling by a 4-2 final in the second half of a back-to-back set in Iowa this weekend.
The Reign got goals from Mikey Eyssimont and Matt Roy and were playing solid hockey, before goals at the end of the second period and beginning of the third period tied the game at two and the game-winning goal from forward Sam Anas put the visitors behind just past the halfway mark of the final period. The Wild capped things off with an empty-net tally to split the weekend set.
Things did start off well for the Reign, after they opened the scoring midway through the opening period through Eyssimont, who picked up his seventh goal of the season. The rookie forward skated down the right wing on a 2-on-1, kept it himself and beat Iowa netminder Andrew Hammond through the five hole for the game’s first goal.
After nearly a full 20 minutes between goals, Ontario struck again, this time with a power-play tally from defenseman Matt Roy. Stationed at the right point, Roy took a feed from forward Philippe Maillet and fired a shot through traffic and in for his seventh goal of the season, tops on the Ontario blueline. Maillet and Matt Moulson tallied the assists on the play, extending Moulson’s scoring streak to four games.
The Wild scored the next two goals to tie the game at two. First, with 2:51 left in the second period, forward Sam Anas snuck a shot through a sprawling Petersen, who nearly made a circus save with his back turned, to get the hosts on the board. Iowa then tied the game early in the third period, courtesy of a power-play goal from captain Cal O’Reilly.
Iowa continued its roll of momentum down the stretch and took its first lead of the evening through Anas’ second of the evening just past the halfway mark of the third. Skating to the right of Petersen, Gerry Fitzgerald sent a cross-crease pass to Anas, who slotted it home for his second goal of the evening.
The Reign had a couple of chances down the stretch but were unable to find the tying goal. The Wild iced the game with an empty-net tally from O’Reilly, his second goal of the game.
Mike Stothers on stopping one goal from becoming multiple unanswered
Stop giving them opportunities. Whether it’s a turnover, missed assignment, or taking penalties.
On missed opportunities to extend the lead with the score at 2-0 and 2-1
You have a team down, you keep them down and finish them off. You let your foot off the gas on the 405 and what happens? You get passed by everyone else. Put your foot on the gas again and you are still seeing nothing but tail lights. Chasing ain’t winning.
Mikey Eyssimont on preventing things from going downhill once a goal is conceded
Yeah, obviously it happened tonight and last night. We won last night, they were able to tie it up but Amadio was able to score. We’ve just got to keep a better head on our shoulders when things aren’t going our way.
On what the team can do better to stop that from happening
I think we just need to follow our leadership. The vets who have been through it all, I think that some of the younger guys, including myself, need to make sure we’re not letting it snowball into something we don’t want.
On his line with Kyle Bauman and Brad Morrison
I think that they both bring pretty good skill. Morrison’s always looking to pass and Bauman is always getting pucks back. I think that we were able to compliment each other pretty well.
On his goal and what he saw on the 2-on-1
I saw them changing and I thought that they were taking away the pass to Scherbak more than anything. I tried to do a no-look shot towards the fivehole and luckily it went in.