The puck is about to drop for Game 5. After losing to the Jackals last night, the Blades face a must win situation. The Blades have to find the momentum early and the game, kill penalties, shut down the Donatis (and Cunningham), and get a stellar performance from Chris Beckford-Tseu.
The first period was pretty even, and both teams had a chance on the power play (including a brief 4 on 3 for the Blades). The difference?
Mike Bayrack scored on our power play.
The goal was notched with one second left on the power play to make it 1-0. Despite some major pressure, the Jackals were not able to slip any past Chris Beckford-Tseu (who had some awesome saves). The period ended with the Everblades up 1-0 on the Jackals.
The second period was really going well for the Everblades. They kept the Jackals from even getting a shot in their first power play. They were even able to score one to take a 2-0 lead thanks to Milan Gajic. Unfortunately it all came tumbling down in the closing minutes of the second when Ernie Hartlieb was called for holding. The Jackals quickly made the smart (but scummy) move of calling for a stick check on Brandon Buck.
He was playing with an illegal curve. Argh!
That's a minor penalty.
The Jackals were able to convert on their 5 on 3 to make it 2-1. They were able to convert on the 5 on 4 (on an odd bounce) to make it 2-2 with only seconds left in the second period.
Hopefully, the Blades wake up, or the Jackals mess up.
And for the love of god, someone slap the equipment dude for me.
(I know I'm a bit late on this part of the re-cap, oops)
The Blades team that reurned to the ice was the Blades team that needs to show up to every single game for the rest of the playoffs. They played smart (not a single penalty), They maintained control for the most part, and they scored the goals they had to score. Matthew Pistilli broke the tie 2:23 into the third period. The Jackals attempted to mount a major offensive, but were repelled time and time again. Ultimately, their offensive power was their downfall. The Blades goals werealmost all due to turnovers or odd-man rushes. The nail in the coffin was a empty net goal by Milan Gajic with 55 seconds to go. The Jackals made one last statement, scoaring a goal with one second to go, but it was too little too late and they lost 4-3.
Sad for them, but good for us. With that win the Blades move on to next round of the Playoffs. They will take on the winner of the Reading Royals/Kalamazoo Wings series (which may end tonight if Reading wins).