CHAMPAIGN, IL – OCTOBER 31
The Quad City Ice Eagle Bantam travel team ran its record to a perfect 6-0, following a pair of hard-fought wins against the Champaign Chiefs in games played Sunday morning the University of Illinois Ice Rink in Champaign. Defenseman Robbie Jacobsen scored the crucial go-ahead goal early in the third period to rally the Eagles to a win the in the second game, which gives Quad Cities a 1-0 record in the CIHL standings. Summaries of both games follow.
In the first game of the day, the Eagles proved their ability to come back late as they scored two goals within 13 seconds late in the third period to turn a 4-3 deficit into an exciting 5-4 victory over the Chiefs. In a game that saw the lead change hands five times, the Eagles broke on top as Center Josh Moon ripped a vicious slap shot past the Champaign goalie at 3:54 of the first period, assisted by Robbie Jacobsen. Champaign responded with two goals to lead for most of the second period until Will Hegwein converted a pass from Austin Busch to tie the game at two. Four minutes later, Ryne Takacs gave the Eagles another lead when he buried a 20-footer with assists going to Justin Welsh and Jacobsen. But Champaign tied the game at three early in the third, and minutes later took their last lead on a deflection on which Goalie Brandon Kruse had no chance. With time winding down, Takacs scored his second of the game to things up at four at the 10:17 mark. Just seventeen seconds later, Will Hegwein notched his third game-winning goal of the season from just off the crease with assists going to linemates Busch and Moon.
The stirring comeback improved the team’s record to 5-0, with Brandon Kruse stretching his personal win streak to three in the Eagle net.
The two teams took to the ice 90 minutes later for the official league contest, this time with Goalie Brandon Morgan guarding the Eagles’ cage. It would turn out to be a great game for the Carr-Takacs-Welsh line, who were all plus-4 for the game. Justin Welsh opened the scoring midway through the first, assisted by Takacs. Bust as in the first game, the Eagles soon found themselves down 2-1 as the home team stormed the Q-C zone and were able to put two shots behind Morgan. John Carr tied the game at two, with an assist going to Takacs as the game moved late into the second period. At that point in the game, Eagle Defenseman Brandon Balsar, after a prolonged mugging in the corner at the hands of a Champaign forward, finally retaliated and was nailed for a pair of minor penalties, putting the Eagles into a shorthanded situation for three minutes. The penalty killing unit of Moon, Corcoran, Busch and Takacs, along with some key saves by Morgan, kept the score even, and set the stage for the third period, still even at two.
Three minutes into the third period, Robbie Jacobsen broke through to give the Eagles the momentum with an unassisted goal. With Champaign down a goal and forced to take more chances, the Eagles put the game totally out of reach with four more goals in five minutes. Josh Moon, showing no ill effects of his ankle injury, scored the fourth Eagle goal at 5:25, assisted by Takacs and Chad Dotterer, and then Moon tallied his second of the game from a sharp angle, with Dotterer picking up another assist. After John Carr scored his second of the game on an unassisted effort at 7:58, Tom Parkinson finished off the scoring at the 10:17 mark, with Jacobsen and Jason Corcoran picking up the assists.
Goalie Morgan turned in another great effort, allowing just two goals on eighteen shots, to run his personal record to 3-0. The Eagles are off until November 13-14 when they travel to Springfield to play both Springfield bantam teams.