Wild Season Abruptly Ends on Overtime Goal
DES MOINES, IA – The Iowa Wild looked to keep their season alive as they returned home for Game 2 of their first round matchup against the Rockford IceHogs. However, Rockford rallied to tie the score in the third and Buddy Robinson delivered the game-winner in overtime to give the IceHogs 4-3 victory, ending the season for the Wild. Three different players scored goals for Iowa and Alex Vlasic had two assists for the IceHogs.
Iowa took the lead 5:49 into the contest when Damien Giroux scored his first goal of the postseason. Giroux had parked in front of the net, looking to screen Arvid Soderblom. Daemon Hunt took a shot that the netminder saved, but Giroux dover for the loose puck, knocking it into the net to make it 1-0.
Iowa maintained the lead until there was 2:33 left in the first when Isaak Phillips tied the score. With Rockford on the power-play, Michal Teply passed the puck to Phillips, who fired a laser from the left faceoff circle that beat Jesper Wallstedt.
The score remained tied through the first 16 minutes of the second, but David Gust put the IceHogs on top at 16:10. Gust picked up the puck in his own end, speeding through the neutral zone and into the Iowa end. He moved in on Wallstedt, beating the goaltender with a wrist shot for his second goal of the playoffs.
The Wild were down coming out of the second, but Marco Rossi scored on the power-play 20 seconds into the third to knot the game at two. Rockford gained control of the puck in their ow end, but was knocked away into the high slot where Rossi scooped up the puck, drilling a shot past Soderblom for his first goal of the postseason.
Just before the six minute mark, the Wild were back on the board. Rossi split between two defenders and in on Soderblom. Rossi tried to jam the puck through the Rockford goaltender, but the netminder made the save. However, the puck was loose, allowing Adam Beckman to jam it home to make it 3-2.
The lead held for almost four minutes before Teply tied the score. D.J. Busdeker took a shot that was tipped, leading to a bouncing puck heading toward the goal. That is where Tepley was able to knock it in to tie the game. Teply had a goal and an assist.
Tied at three, the game went to overtime, but Robinson won it 2:05 into the extra frame. He moved in front of the crease, taking a shot that beat Wallstedt to give Rockford the victory, sending them onto the next round of the playoffs.
By Robert Pannier