KALAMAZOO, MI—The Kalamazoo Wings battled to a hard-earned point against the Kansas City Mavericks, but it was the visitors who escaped with a 4-3 shootout win in front of a standing room only crowd of 5,143 on Wednesday morning at Wings Event Center.
After the two clubs spent the first portion of the first period feeling each other out, the Wings eventually found their footing and scored the first goal of the day. Danny Moynihan wiggled his way into the Kansas City zone and let a shot fly from the top of the circles. An initial save was made by Tyler Parsons, but Moynihan followed up the play and swept home the rebound for his first as a Kalamazoo Wing.
With under a minute to play in the first period, the Mavericks knotted the score with a seeing-eye shot that came from the blue line. Bryce Aneloski launched a one timer from the right-side point that carved through a screen and slipped past Joel Martin for the equalizer.
Regrouping at the break, the Wings surged in the opening minutes of the middle period, and took advantage of a Kansas City goalie change. Moynihan was fed the puck by Jon Jutzi, and he was able to zip a wrist shot over the glove of Mason McDonald for his second goal of the day.
Ten minutes later, Kalamazoo continued their aggressive play and were immediately rewarded in the aftermath of a stout penalty kill. Mackenze Stewart flung the puck up the left-side boards, where it was corralled by Scott Henegar, who had just been released from the penalty box. Henegar cruised in on a breakaway and found an opening in the top shelf for his second goal of the year.
Slowly chipping away at the Wings’ two-goal lead, the Mavericks used their good team speed to reach within a goal. Mike McMurtry took a shot which was stopped by Martin, but a rebound left on the doorstep allowed McMurtry to tap home an open try on a power play.
As the third period ticked away, the Mavericks’ pace and pressure continued to relentlessly attack. As Aneloski scooted up the right-wing wall, he released a shot that was low and to the outside. Martin kicked away the effort, but it was followed up by Matt Robertson, who tied the game at three, eventually forcing overtime.
Martin was tested heavily during the extra period, but he made four critical stops during the sudden death frame. His counterpart was able to come up with two overtime saves for Kansas City.
The game headed to a shootout, and the eventual game winner was scored in the second round by McMurtry, propelling the Mavericks to a 4-3 win.
Next: Kalamazoo vs. Cincinnati Cyclones, Saturday, October 28, 7:00 p.m., Wings Event Center.
Broadcast information: Saturday’s game will air on AM 1660 The Fan in Kalamazoo or online at www.1660thefan.com/listen-live.
Notes: The crowd of 5,143 was the largest since March 17, 2017 for Kalamazoo… Peter Schneider (lower body) and Eric Kattelus (upper body) did not play… Kyle Blaney was injured during warm ups and could not play…Kansas City goalie Tyler Parsons left the game after the first period after suffering an apparent injury during the period… Martin made 32 stops and appeared in his 599th career professional game.
Single-game tickets are on sale! Tickets start as low as $10 and can be purchased at http://kwings.com/SingleGameTickets or at the Wings Event Center box office.
Wings Event Center, owned and operated by Greenleaf Hospitality Group, is home to the Kalamazoo Wings professional hockey team and a full entertainment venue offering concerts, sporting events, family shows and trade shows. Built in 1974, Wings Event Center values partnerships with the community to bring events and attractions that enrich the lives of residents in the Kalamazoo area.