Cyclones Survive for 3-1 Win Over Oklahoma
Oct. 6, 2017 – Ames, Iowa – Friday night’s game against 20th-ranked Oklahoma marked fifth-ranked Iowa State’s first game against a ranked team in the ACHA Men’s Division 1, meaning the Cyclones would be facing their first true test of the 2017-18 season. The Cyclones got off on a good foot with a goal early in the first period, but the Cyclones were forced to hang on for a 3-1 win that was padded by an empty-netter late after struggling to establish much offense the second half of the game.
As might be expected, Oklahoma seemed to have “bus legs” in the first period and the Cyclones received an additional boost at 2:25 of the opening frame when Sooner forward Michael Behm was called for cross-checking, putting Iowa State on the power play. Thirty-eight seconds into the man advantage, the Cyclones opened scoring when Aaron Azevedo (Spokane, Wash. – Osoyoos Coyotes/KIJHL) skated the puck into the offensive zone, cut across the high slot and made a drop pass to Tony Uglem (Moorhead, Minn. – Austin Bruins/NAHL) that the sharp-shooter rifled through traffic to score high for the 1-0 lead. A few minutes after Uglem’s power play tally, Cyclone netminder Derek Moser (Tomah, Wisc. – Rochester Ice Hawks/MnJHL) faced a point-blank opportunity after Tanner Ulland saucered a pass from the alley on the attack to Behm, who had slipped in behind the Cyclone defense to drive the net unopposed, but Moser remained calm and made a butterfly save sliding across to his right post as Behm tried to beat Moser along that same post. Moser’s big save helped keep Oklahoma off the board the opening 20 minutes and the Cyclones skated into the first intermission with a 1-0 lead.
The Cyclones appeared to have momentum the early part of the second period, too, and just before the four-minute mark Brit Brothen (Andover, Minn. – La Crosse Freeze/NA3HL) sent a puck off the glass into the neutral zone that Uglem managed to touch first after Azevedo slashed the stick out of the hands of Raymond Wilson, preventing the Sooner forward from touching it. Uglem moved it to Azevedo near the red line and Azevedo proceeded into the offensive zone, put the puck through the skates of Oklahoma defenseman Jackson Giammona, picked up the puck behind Giammona just beyond the hash marks, and managed to sweep the disc in low with a backhander for the 2-0 lead at 4:05 of the second. Oklahoma responded at the 5:33 mark, though, as Aaron Krominga used Colton Kramer (Sioux City, Iowa – Minot Minotauros/NAHL) as a screen and sniped a shot top shelf past the glove of Moser to reduce Iowa State’s lead to 2-1.
As the second period progressed, Oklahoma started grabbing momentum away from the Cyclones and establishing some prolonged attacks in the offensive zone. Moser was again forced to make a big save just past the eight-minute mark, this time in the second, by following a Tyler Lazarek point shot through significant traffic and covering the rebound with Evan Del Casale on the doorstep. Trevor Sabo (Skokie, Ill. – Rochester Ice Hawks/MnJHL) stepped up with major play defensively at the 9:32 mark by tying up Luc Whyte’s stick near the left post to prevent a near-certain Sooner goal to keep the score 2-1, but Oklahoma largely controlled play the remainder of the second and went onto the 5-on-3 power play with 11.1 seconds left when Jake Arroyo (Bolingbrook, Ill. – Austin Bruins/NAHL) joined Kody Reuter (Sioux City, Iowa – Austin Bruins/NAHL), who was assessed a hooking penalty at 18:38, in the penalty box.
Iowa State managed to kill off both Reuter’s and Arroyo’s penalties and also managed to spring A.J. Gullickson (Verona, Wisc. – Alexandria Blizzard/NA3HL) for a breakaway at 4:10 of the third, but the sophomore forward sent his shot over the net and allowed Oklahoma to stay within one goal. Both teams did a fairly good job of protecting the slot the remainder of the game, which forced the Sooners to bring netminder Dan Black to the bench with 51 seconds remaining for the extra attacker in an attempt to tie the game. That calculated risk did not pay off, though, as Jon Severson (Rockford, Ill. – Nashville Jr. Predators/NA3HL) intercepted a soft Sooner pass to the point and sent the puck forward into the neutral zone for Uglem to skate in on a breakaway for an easy empty-netter with 28.6 seconds remaining to ice the 3-1 win.
Moser stopped 32 of the 33 shots he faced to pick up his third win in three starts thus far in 2017-18 while Black saved 31 of the 33 shots he faced.
Iowa State’s record now stands at 5-0-0-0 while Oklahoma’s falls to 2-5-0-1.
Following the game, Cyclone Hockey Head Coach and General Manager Jason Fairman was largely relieved to come away with the win in a game in which the tables certainly turned.
“A win’s a win,” said Fairman in initial summary. “I thought it was potentially going to be lop-sided and then, all of the sudden, we were hanging on for dear life for part of the game.
“I don’t know if it was because we went with a shorter bench, because we’re dealing with disciplinary issues within the team and we were only running three lines, or if we’re out of shape early in the year, or what it is. But, bottom line is, a win’s a win.”
Although the Cyclones got away from the team’s systems some the second half of the game and seemed to often be a half-step slow, Fairman did proactively compliment Oklahoma’s defensive effort and predicted Saturday night’s rematch would be a similar affair.
“They did a good job collapsing to the house and they kept us to the outside,” Fairman said of the Sooners. “They also did a good job clearing rebounds.
“We did a pretty good job keeping them to the outside as well, so I suspect we’ll see another defensive slugfest tomorrow night, too.”
Fairman also joked that a slightly altered line-up for Saturday night’s game could positively affect the Cyclones chances of picking up two wins on the weekend.
“Well, we’ll have a little bit of a different lien-up tomorrow night—some guys will have been ‘set free,’ said Fairman with a chuckle, alluding to a line in the movie Slap Shot. “So, we’ll see how that goes and if we’ll have some energy with some different guys in the line-up.
“We’re going to have to have a better effort than we had the second half of tonight.”
Opening face-off for Saturday night’s game is scheduled for 7:30 p.m. Cyclone Hockey will honor the Cyclone Hockey Hall of Fame Class of 2017 during the first intermission of Saturday’s game. The five inductees—Scott Breitenfeldt, Dan Bullard, Chad Evers, Mary Beth Hanlin, and David Moline—will have been formally inducted earlier Saturday afternoon at the Cyclone Hockey Hall of Fame Banquet at Jethro’s Banquet Center.
Cyclone Hockey is continuing discussions with three potential long-term options for streaming games, but will continue to stream home games online live using Facebook Live on the team’s Facebook page until a long-term solution is reached. Fans can follow Cyclone Hockey in general by going to the team’s Facebook page at www.facebook.com/CycloneHockey and can, additionally, follow Cyclone Hockey online on Twitter at @CycloneHockey.
Additionally, Cyclone Hockey is busy selling season tickets and flex packs for the season. The organization has kept the same slashed ticket prices it’s had the past three seasons and is also maintaining the same incredibly low group rates for 2017-18. Fans can learn more about Cyclone Hockey’s extremely affordable ticket prices at the organization’s website at www.cyclonehockey.com or by calling 515.294.3498. Cyclone Hockey…Fifty Years of Excellence.
NOTES: Video review revealed that Aaron Azevedo’s second-period goal was not unassisted as originally scored but that Tony Uglem and Brit Brothen assisted on the play. With a goal and an assist on the night, Azevedo had had his third-straight game with one lamp-lighter and one helper and has 6 points (3-3-6) in 3 games played after missing the opening series against Illinois State. Tony Uglem, who put up 2 goals and 1 assist, factoring in on all three Iowa State goals, now leads the Cyclones in scoring with 7 points (5-2-7) in 5 games. Uglem has scored one-fourth of Iowa State’s 20 goals so far this season. A.J. Gullickson is averaging a point per game thanks to his assist, carrying 4 points (2-2-4) in 4 games played after missing last Saturday’s game against Waldorf due to illness. Derek Moser has allowed only one goal in each of his three starts and now carries a .968 save percentage, stopping 90 of the 93 shots he’s faced. Iowa State has only allowed four goals in five games played thus far in 2017-18.
GOALS BY PERIOD 1 2 3 FINAL IOWA STATE 1 1 1 3 OKLAHOMA 0 1 0 1
First Period – Scoring: ISU, Uglem (Azevedo, Gullickson), 3:03 (pp). Penalties: OU, Behm (cross-checking), 2:25.
Second Period – Scoring: ISU, Azevedo (Uglem, Brothen), 4:05; OU, Krominga (DeSousa), 5:33. Penalties: OU, Whyte (elbowing), 13:18; ISU, Reuter (hooking), 18:38; ISU, Arroyo (boarding), 19:48.
Third Period – Scoring: ISU, Uglem (Severson), 19:31 (en). Penalties: ISU, Uglem (boarding), 5:53.
SHOTS BY PERIOD 1 2 3 TOTAL IOWA STATE 17 8 9 34 OKLAHOMA 11 14 8 33
GOALTENDERS (SV/SH) 1 2 3 TOTAL ISU, Moser (60:00) 11/11 13/14 8/8 32/33 OU, Black (59:38) 16/17 7/8 8/8 31/33 OU, Empty Net (0:22) -/- -/- 0/1 0/1
POWER PLAY: ISU 1-2; OU 0-3 PENALTIES: ISU 3-6; OU 2-4