Sioux Falls, SD—Playing their third game in three days, the Sioux Falls Stampede ran out of gas Sunday night and fell 5-2 to the Lincoln Stars before 4,908 at the PREMIER Center. Artem Ivanyuzhenkov tallied both goals for the herd who fell to 27-14-8 on the season, but still remain in third place in the Western Conference just two points behind second place Waterloo and three points behind first place Omaha. Jaxson Stauber stopped 30 of 35 shots in goal for the Herd who will now play the next four games on the road.
Everything that could go wrong did go wrong in the first period for the Stampede. The Stars took a 1-0 lead just 43 seconds in on a goal from Ashton Calder. Casey Dornbach brought the puck into the Stampede zone and wristed a shot that was stopped by Jaxson Stauber, but the rebound bounced out to Calder who knocked it home for a 1-0 lead. The Herd looked like a team playing their third game in as many days and struggled to get anything going and the Stars took advantage again at 5:29 when Tristian Ashbrook snuck through the slot and one-timed the puck past Stauber for a 2-0 advantage. Both teams exchanged two power play chances in the period, but were unable to convert. Lincoln outshot the Herd 17-5 in the period.
The Stars kept things rolling early in the third period, making it a 3-0 game at 8:49 when Josiah Slavin knocked home a loose rebound. After a poor clearing attempt by the Stampede the puck bounced in front of the net where Stauber stopped the puck, but couldn’t cover the rebound and Slavin put it away for a three goal cushion. The Stampede would get back into the game at 11:09 when Artem Ivanyuzhenkov tallied his fourth goal of the weekend. On the power play, Cameron Burke picked up the puck behind the Lincoln net and sent a pass into the slot for Ivanyuzhenkov who quickly knocked it through the pads of Lincoln netminder Tomas Vomacka to make it a 3-1 game. The Stampede went on the power play moments later, but couldn’t get another one past Vomacka and headed into the locker room down two goals.
Any chance of a comeback was squashed just 3:08 into the third period as Josiah Slavin brought the puck over the Stampede line and wristed a shot that beat the glove of Stauber for a 4-1 advantage. It remained that way until 13:12 of the period when the Stars added to their lead when Delvin McCabe wristed a shot past Stauber for a 5-1 advantage. The Stampede chipped away at the deficit late in the game when Ivanyuzhenkov tallied his second of the night, again on the power play. Kirill Panyukov sent a perfect pass in the slot to Ivanyuzhenkov who tucked the puck under the pads of Vomacka, but that was as close as the Herd would get.
Sioux Falls outshot the Stars 13-10 in the period, but were outshot in the game, 35-28. The Herd finished 2-for-8 on the power play while Lincoln was 0-for-5.
The Stampede return to action Friday night when they travel to Des Moines to face the Buccaneers at 7:05 PM. Fans can catch the game live on KELO News Talk 1320-AM, 107.9-FM and KELO.com starting at 6:40 PM with the Splash City Pre-Game Show.