Wild End Griffins’ March, 5-4
<strong>GRAND RAPIDS GRIFFINS 4 at Iowa Wild 5</strong>
[From the Griffins]
DES MOINES, Iowa – Connor Dewar started and finished the night’s scoring on Saturday, lifting the Iowa Wild to a 5-4 victory over the Grand Rapids Griffins at Wells Fargo Arena. His second goal came with 3:35 remaining to break a 4-4 tie and hand the Griffins their first regulation loss since Feb. 28, snapping Grand Rapids’ six-game point streak (4-0-2-0) and four-game road winning streak.
Despite being outshot 13-3 during the opening period, the Wild went to the locker room with a 1-0 lead thanks to Dewar, who beat Pat Nagle with a wrister from the left circle at 19:18, just two seconds after the only power play of the frame expired.
A total of six goals were scored at a furious pace during the second, starting with Calen Addison’s tally from the high slot at 3:16 that put Iowa ahead 2-0. But the Griffins answered with two goals in a span of 13 seconds to knot matters, beginning with Patrick Curry’s one-timer from the right circle during a power play at 6:06 and followed by a Tyler Spezia shot from the right side that trickled past goalie Joel Rumpel. Albin Grewe earned the primary assist on Spezia’s goal for his first point as a Griffin.
The Wild responded with a pair of goals that bounced off bodies and re-established their two-goal cushion at 4-2. Ryan O’Rourke’s blast from the left point hit traffic and fluttered over Nagle at 7:05 for his first pro groal, before a centering pass from Gerald Mayhew was redirected into the net by Gabriel Dumont’s face at 12:32.
The Griffins tallied their second power play goal of the period and fourth of the weekend with 1:46 remaining before intermission, pulling within one when Givani Smith whipped a shot top-shelf from a sharp right-side angle off a nifty feed by Curry. The assist gave Curry his first two-point game as a pro.
Spezia finished off his second two-goal game of the season with just under 10 minutes left in the third, as he pounced on a loose puck in the slot and quickly put it past Rumpel to tie things up at 4-4. Riley Barber is the only other Griffin with a pair of two-goal outings this season.
The Griffins, who twice fought back from two-goal deficits, could not respond to Dewar’s late marker, suffering their fourth regulation loss of the campaign despite a 40-21 shot advantage.
· Joe Hicketts followed up his three-assist game on Friday with two more helpers tonight.
· Smith (3-1—4) and Dominic Turgeon (1-3—4) each extended his point streak to three games.
· With Brian Lashoff out tonight, the Griffins slotted three rookie defensemen into their lineup in Charle-Edouard D’Astous, Tory Dello and Donovan Sebrango. D’Astous had an assist on Spezia’s first goal to mark his first point of the season.
Grand Rapids 0 3 1 - 4
Iowa 1 3 1 - 5
1st Period-1, Iowa, Dewar 6 (O’Rourke, Chaffee), 19:18. Penalties-Hicketts Gr (roughing), 17:16.
2nd Period-2, Iowa, Addison 3 (Sheehy, McLeod), 3:16. 3, Grand Rapids, Curry 2 (Hicketts, Turgeon), 6:06 (PP). 4, Grand Rapids, Spezia 3 (Grewe, D’Astous), 6:19. 5, Iowa, O’Rourke 1 (Dewar), 7:05. 6, Iowa, Dumont 8 (Mayhew, Shaw), 12:32. 7, Grand Rapids, Smith 4 (Curry, Elson), 18:14 (PP). Penalties-Chaffee Ia (boarding), 4:17; Spezia Gr (fighting), 6:33; Burton Ia (fighting), 6:33; O’Rourke Ia (holding), 9:04; McLeod Ia (hooking), 14:36; Belpedio Ia (cross-checking), 16:25.
3rd Period-8, Grand Rapids, Spezia 4 (Loggins, Hicketts), 10:03. 9, Iowa, Dewar 7 (Giroux, Bartkowski), 16:25. Penalties-D’Astous Gr (tripping), 6:14; Curry Gr (slashing), 10:58.
Shots on Goal-Grand Rapids 13-15-12-40. Iowa 3-10-8-21.
Power Play Opportunities-Grand Rapids 2 / 4; Iowa 0 / 3.
Goalies-Grand Rapids, Nagle 4-3-0 (21 shots-16 saves). Iowa, Rumpel 1-1-0 (40 shots-36 saves).
1. IA Dewar (two goals, assist); 2. GR Spezia (two goals); 3. IA O’Rourke (goal, assist)
Record / Next Game
Grand Rapids: 8-4-2-0 (18 pts.) / Thurs., April 1 at Chicago 3 p.m. EDT
Iowa: 5-9-2-0 (12 pts.) / Tue., March 30 at Texas 7 p.m. CDT