Sunday, October 9, 2011

3-0! Ice win 7-4

The Indiana Ice are now 3-0 on the young USHL season after a weekend sweep of the US National Team Development Program U17 team in Ann Arbor.

Tonight, the offense exploded for seven goals in a 7-4 victory over the U17 national team. 

Midway through the second, the Ice trailed 3-2 -- briefly -- in a wild 84 seconds of action. Cody Bradley gave the Ice a 2-1 lead, but back-to-back USA goals by Tyler Kelleher and Anthony Louis just 35 seconds apart made it 3-2 USA. 

But just 18 seconds after Louis' goal, Jacob Fallon knotted the game back up at 3 and set off a run of five consecutive ice goals to pull away. Drew Smolczynski assisted on Fallon's goal, which came with 10:54 left in the second. Robert Polosello scored his third goal of the year on assists from Bradley and Christian Hilbrich with 7:24 left in the second, and the Ice had the lead for good .

Alexander Kuqali -- on the PP -- Sean Kuraly and Dan Sherer scored goals 2:48 apart in the third period, giving the Ice a 7-3 edge with 11:59 left in the game. 

Bradley had two assists to go with his goal for a three-point night. Polosello, Robert Gawron and Kuraly all had a goal and an assist each. Daniil Tarasov had two assists and now has six points in three games. Polosello and Bradley's goals gave them a team-high three for the season in three games. Tarasov -- the USHL's goal-scoring leader last year -- leads the Ice with four assists. 

Gawron's goal and assist were his first USHL points. He scored the Ice's first goal at 15:03 of the first. Defenseman R.J. Boyd had his first assist as an Ice player -- he played with the Chicago Steel for part of the season last year. Alex Barron was a team-best +3. 

Goaltender Dalton Izyk made his USHL debut and stopped 24 shots to get the victory. Curtis Frye stopped 18 shots for USA. The Ice outshot the national team 28-25. 

The Ice power play was 1-for-4. So was Team USA's. At 6-of-13, the Ice's power play is the USHL's best. It'll get a shot at the big 210x90 Pepsi Coliseum ice surface next week. 

Lots of parallels in this game. Kelleher -- who had two goals and an assist over the weekend -- was the Ice's fifth-round pick in the futures draft this year. The player from Deerfield Academy decided to take the USNDTP invite rather than the Ice's. Also, new USNDTP U17 coach Danton Cole is a familiar face. He played for the IHL Indianapolis Ice in 1995-96. Fallon briefly played college hockey across town at the University of Michigan before returning to the Ice this season. 

The Ice, Green Bay and Waterloo are the only unbeaten teams in the USHL through two weekends of play. The Ice and GB are 3-0, Waterloo is 2-0. On a per-game basis, the Ice are also the second-highest scoring team in the USHL with 16 goals in three games -- an average of 5.3 gpg. Team USA has 19 goals, but has done so in four games, scoring 4.75 per game.

The Ice and the USA U17 team will play again next Saturday, Oct. 15, in the Ice's home opener at the Pepsi Coliseum.

Three stars
1. Cody Bradley, Ice: 1 goal, 2 assists, +2, 2 shots
2. Robert Polosello, Ice: 1 goal, 1 assist, +2, 2 shots
3. Hudson Fasching, USA, 1 goal, 1 assist, +1, 2 shots 

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