The Power hit the road this weekend to face the Rochester Grizzlies for two games. Prior to this short series, Rochester was 6-0 against Milwaukee this season. The two teams last met for a single game on Dec. 1 when the Grizzlies shut out the Power 3-0. This weekend would mark the last regular season matchup between Rochester and Milwaukee, so a win against the Grizzlies was needed more than ever.
The Power started Spencer Northway between the pipes on Friday evening. The Grizzlies wasted no time getting a point on the board, scoring 32 seconds into the game. They extended their lead by two just shy of the halfway mark of the first. In the final minutes of the period, Rochester scored once more, which was later waved off due to the net being off. The Power left the period down by two, but was only outshot 14-17.
The second period unfortunately went in favor of the Grizzlies. They scored two more goals, one within the first five minutes and another in the final two minutes. Shortly after their fourth goal, the first penalty of the night was called against Milwaukee. The Power entered the third with a four-goal deficit and a 5-on-4 disadvantage. However, after successfully killing the penalty, Max Erstad scored the Power’s first goal of the night. Nate Stone and Caden Severtsen were credited for the assists. The Grizzlies recorded one last goal of the night around the halfway mark of the third and took a 5-1 win against Milwaukee.
The Power were looking to redeem themselves on Saturday night and decided to make some changes; Austin Bartell was chosen to be the starting goaltender. Milwaukee was already off to a better start than the night before. Although they were quickly getting outshot, Riley Planey scored with 9:34 left of the period, giving the Power a 1-0 lead. Matthew Ebersole was credited for the assist. As the period dwindled down, Ben Cremers extended Milwaukee’s lead by two, which was assisted by Connor O’Neal.
The Power entered the second with a two-goal lead; however, the Grizzlies quickly retaliated and scored 2:02 into the period. They managed to tie up the game at the 12:38 mark, then took the lead a few minutes later. Both teams began to get chippy with each other towards the end of the period. In the meantime, Patrick Toomey scored a buzzer beater for the Power, marking his first goal with the team and tying the game back up! The goal was assisted by Mason Ausmus and Max Erstad.
After an exciting second period, the game was tied 3-3. It wasn’t until halfway through the period when the next goal would be scored. Unfortunately for the Power, the Grizzlies were the ones who took the upper hand. Now with a 4-3 lead, Rochester gained momentum and scored again: just eleven seconds later. Milwaukee now had a two-goal deficit after making their comeback in the second. Desperate to stop the Grizzlies from extending their lead, the Power caused Rochester to take a penalty shot with 3:16 left of the game. Luckily, the Grizzlies couldn’t get past Bartell’s wall and it stayed a 5-3 game. Nonetheless, Rochester made up for the missed shot and scored less than a minute later. The Power fell to the Grizzlies 6-3, and Rochester stayed undefeated against Milwaukee this season.
Looking ahead, the Power will visit the Wausau Cyclones on Friday, Feb. 4 and Saturday, Feb. 5. The two teams recently faced off on Jan. 15; Milwaukee made an incredible comeback during the second period but fell short in the third, losing 6-5. Both the Cyclones and the Power are looking to take a playoff spot, making this upcoming series an exciting one. Make sure to tune in on Hockey TV to see the action play out!
Story by Julia Woodcock