Granite City 6 @ Rochester 4 – With first place on the line in the West Division, the Rochester Grizzlies and Granite City Lumberjacks had a lot to play for. The Lumberjacks jumped out to a 3-0 lead and never looked back, winning Wednesday’s contest, 6-4. The Grizzlies and Lumberjacks were in third and second place in the West Division respectively coming in to the night. Both teams trailing the North Iowa Bulls.
Grizzlies goalie Liam Kelly earned his fourth straight start and suffered a tough bounce early in the game. Matt Moran dumped the puck in and it bounced off the zamboni doors and into the slot where Zack DeBoom knocked it into a yawning cage. Blake Spetz scored his third of the year at 13:55 of the first, making the game 2-0 Granite City. Grant Troumbly scored his 25th goal of the season at 15:31.
Granite City kept the foot on the pedal early in the second as Spetz scored his second of the game just 3:38 into the second. Bailey Sommers finished off a nice pass from Troumbly to extend the lead to five goals.
Rochester would respond 48 seconds later on the power play, as Seth Bacon scored his 10th of the year. Lucas Newman picked up the lone assist after winning the draw clean. The lead did not last long as Jordan Drobinski scored just 70 seconds later for the Lumberjacks, making it 6-1. Matt DeRosa scored a late second period goal, cutting the lead to 6-2. The goal was DeRosa’s 17th of the season.
Granite City was held off the scoresheet in the third period but Rochester could not muster up enough of a comeback. Lucas Newman cut the lead in half at 10:08 of the third, knocking a rebound past Lumberjacks goalie Matt Fitzgerald. DeRosa added his second of the game after a wonderful pass from Newman at 18:39 of the third.
Fitzgerald made 45 saves in the win, while Kelly made 32 saves in the loss.