Redbirds 6 - University of Missouri 3 The Redbirds shut down the Mizzou power play while maintaining their own scoring machine to take the decisive win and improve to 1 - 1 in MACHA-Gold.
Just 13 hours after suffering a loss in the first game of the season, the Illinois State Redbirds came back, ready to conintue their development in the team's first year of MACHA Gold play in more than a decade.
Missouri opened the scoring early, just five minutes into the contest and stuck again just before the break to take a 2 - 0 lead into the locker room. Both goals were due to individual breakdowns. They did not reflect team weakness or the difficulty with the penalty kill as they had the night before. Both goals were even strength.
The game began to turn the Redbirds way in the second period. John Orlak made a statement five miuntes into the period by stopping a penalty shot by Missou's Tony Maus. At that moment the feeling on the Redbird bench was sky high. Drinkwater then began the scoring. After some crisp passing involving the entire power play unit, Drinkwater had time and space to place a shot from the high slot high blocker side to start the Redbird scoring. Just 39 seconds later, James Cioffi a converted forward from the Chicago Force scored on a rocket from the point, to knot the game at two. Mizzou took the lead back two minutes later, even strength. With just two minutes left in the period, Brett Kahanec poked a back door pass behind Kevin McFarland to tie the game back up at three.
The Redbirds felt like they had the momentum going into the third period and they did. The Redbirds came out with the most energy they showed all weekend, and it proved to be too much for the excellect Missouri squad. Dustin Karrison scored the game winning goal 15 minutes into the third period on a 5 on 3 power play goal which was earned by Justin Arndt as he skated away from a slash rather than being allowed to be drawn into the box with the Mizzou offender. Michael Prentice, just one minute later, scored the fourth power play goal in eleven chances for the day. Dustin Karrison wrapped things up with a short-handed goal while the Redbirds while defending a 4 on 6 situation. Shots were even at 29 a piece. After giving up 5 power play goals in the previous contest, the Redbirds were a perfect 8 for 8 in stopping the potent Mizzou PP attack.
The Redbird's will take the momentum of the win with them to Big Rapids, Michigan as they prepare for a very tough Ferris State team. This non-conference matchup pits last year's # 12 Redbirds against # 9 Bulldogs. The Friday Face-off is at 6:00 PM Eastern Time, followed by a Noon game Saturday.