LINCOLN, Neb. - The Lincoln Stars (10-18-2) couldn’t snap their skid, coming up short once again against the Fargo Force (22-12-2), dropping the Sunday afternoon game 5-3 at the Ice Box.
For the fifth consecutive game, the Stars allowed the first goal of the game as Kyle Smolen jammed in his fifth goal of the season 3:20 into the opening period.
Charles-Alexis Legault knotted up the game at one with his first USHL goal at 10:13. Stanley Cooley sent the puck on goal and Legault had two whacks at it, but finally pushed it past Brennan Boynton for Lincoln’s first strike of the game. Cole Craft also picked up an assist.
Jeremy Davidson quickly put Fargo back on top on their first power play, blasting a one-timer from the left circle over the left shoulder of Ryan Ouellette. Lincoln trailed 2-1 after 20 minutes.
Ouellette came up big in the second period, stopping a couple of grade-A scoring chances from the Force. Boynton also stole the show, including a pair of saves on Cross Hanas, keeping his team in front by a goal. The Stars outshot the Force 9-6 in the middle period, but were left searching for the equalizer heading into the third period.
In the third period, the Stars went on the attack early.
Nikolai Mayorov tied the game at 4:59 on a breakaway after a great flip-pass from the defensive zone by Hanas. Mayorov’s tally marked his second in as many games. Hanas extended his point streak to three games with the apple while Jack O’Leary was awarded a secondary assist.
Cody Monds (8:32) and Austin Wong (10:19) struck for Fargo on consecutive power plays, propelling the Force to 4-2 lead.
O’Leary got the Stars within one after a zone entry from Mayorov and a saucer pass from Clay Hanus in the slot. The Cornell commit one-timed the feed from Hanus past Boynton at 13:39. Bear Hughes extinguished the Stars hopes of a comeback with an empty-net goal at 19:17.
The Stars failed to score on their lone power play and allowed three power-play goals on four opportunities. Ouellette stopped 15 of 19 unofficial shots while Boynton stopped 12 of 15.
The Stars will play their fourth game in five days when the Omaha Lancers come to town for a Tuesday night battle at 7:05 p.m. It’s $2 Tuesday, which means $2 PBR Tallboys, $2 hot dogs and $2 medium soda! Get tickets: etix.com/ticket/p/7470965