Boise, ID (11/30/12) – Kael Mouillierat and Austin Smith each scored twice and Austin Fyten added two assists Friday night as the Idaho Steelheads held off the Colorado Eagles, 4-2, in front of 4,350 fans at Boise's CenturyLink Arena.
It was the eighth win in the month of November for Idaho, which increased its overall record to 13-5-2 (28 points) in the ECHL's Western Conference. Colorado drops to 8-9-2 overall despite a valiant comeback attempt in the third period.
Idaho got on the board first with one of the prettiest goals of the season. Austin Smith picked up a rebound right in front of the Colorado net. Smith absorbed a big check from behind, knocking him to his stomach. As he fell, he managed to lift the puck over Tyler Plante's shoulder, tucking it just inside the far corner of the net at 4:52 of the first period to make it 1-0. Idaho would add to the lead late in the period on the power play when a Kael Mouillierat wrist shot from the right circle beat Plante far side to put the Steelheads on top, 2-0, after one period.
Colorado's Michael Forney scored on a mini-breakaway early in the second to cut into Idaho's lead but the Steelheads got the goal back three minutes later when Austin Smith back-handed home a rebound off an Austin Fyten shot at 5:33 of the second, Smith's second of the night and ninth of the season in just 11 ECHL games, to re-establish Idaho's two goal lead at 3-1.
That score would hold until the early stages of the final period when Chad Costello went top shelf over the glove hand of Josh Robinson at 6:10 of the third to make it 3-2. Colorado kept pressure on the Idaho net for the bulk of the third period, out-shooting Idaho in the final frame, 17-7, but Robinson stood tall with several big saves. The Steelheads nearly put the game away on a two-on-one rush, but Plante made a terrific leg-pad save on Fyten to keep it a one-goal game.
In the final minute, Colorado pulled its goalie for an extra attacker and continued to pressure Idaho's net. But Mouillierat picked up a loose puck along the far wall and back-handed a puck over 150 feet and into the empty net to seal the Idaho win. Mouillierat leads Idaho with 13 goals.
Both goalies performed well, with Robinson stopping 35 of 37 Eagles shots. Plante was solid as well with 34 saves on 37 shots for Colorado. Idaho was 1-7 on the power play and Colorado was 0-3 in a game that featured three fights, with Mathieu Tousignant, Scott Todd, and Ben Ondrus each dropping the gloves for Idaho.
The popular "Pink in the Rink" promotion concludes Saturday night as the team will wear special pink jerseys against the Colorado Eagles. The jerseys will be auctioned off to raise money for St. Luke's Mountain States Tumor Institute. Saturday will also double as "Teddy Bear Toss Night," as fans have the opportunity to throw toys on the ice Tickets are available by calling the CenturyLink Arena box office at 208.331.8497 or by going online at www.idahosteelheads.com
COORS OFFENSIVE PLAYER OF THE GAME - Austin Smith
CENTURYLINK THREE STARS:
1) Austin Smith (ID)
2) Austin Fyten (ID)
3) Josh Robinson (ID)
Group outings at a Steelheads game are a great way to gather friends, colleagues, or co-workers for a fun night out in downtown Boise. Ticket prices are discounted and you can get a Pepsi, Double-R Ranch Hot Dog, and bag of Tim’s Cascade Chips with each ticket. Contact the Steelheads front office at 208.383.0080 or log on to www.idahosteelheads.com for more information.