STORM RAINS ON INDY'S PARADE, DEFEAT ICE 3-2
The Indiana Ice scored two quick goals in the first, but were unable to maintain the lead as they fell to the Tri-City Storm, 3-2, in the opening game of the 2012 USHL Fall Classic.
Canon Pieper and Austin Ortega scored for Indy while Dalton Izyk was equal to 19 of 22 shots on net.
Despite being outshot 18-6 in the first period, Tri-City found Indy’s number midway through the stanza when Garrett Gamez found the back of the net to give the Storm a 1-0 lead.
Canon Pieper connected with Gleb Koryagin and Joe Fiala to knot the score at 1-1 with three minutes remaining. Pieper picked up the rebound on a shot from the point and lifted the puck over the Tri-City netminder.
A pair of Ice newcomers teamed up to give Indy a 2-1 lead with 65 seconds remaining in the period. Brian Morgan weaved through defenders and fired the puck in the high slot before Ortega picked up the rebound and gave the Ice a 2-1 lead late in the first.
Ortega is making his Ice debut after being acquired Wednesday in a trade from the Cedar Rapids RoughRiders. He finished the 2011-2012 season second on the RoughRiders roster in goals (19) and tied for second in power play goals (7).
The puck was well travelled in the second period, but only hit pay dirt once as Tri-City evened the score with just under 11 minutes left in the frame. Joel L’Esperance scored the tying goal for the Storm. Scoring chances were at a premium for both squads as they split a total of 14 shots in the second.
Both teams kept up the defensive pressure, allowing only 15 combined shots on net. The score remained even until Brian Ward broke the tie with 4:48 left in the contest.
2012 USHL Fall Classic action continues Friday at 11 am when Indy faces off with the Des Moines Buccaneers from the IBP Ice Center in Sioux City, IA.