The Missouri Mavericks closed out a four-game road trip on Friday night against the Quad City Mallards with a 5-4 shootout loss. The Mavericks finished the trip with four of a possible eight points and return home to start a nine-game home stand tomorrow with a 14-17-7 record.
Click here for tonight’s box score.
The Mallards made a coaching change on Friday afternoon with Phil Axtell taking over on an interim basis for the departed Terry Ruskowski. Axtell’s tenure began with a goal on the first shot of the game 35 seconds in as Michael Parks snuck behind the Mavericks’ defense and beat goalie Eamon McAdam with a backhander. After the early setback, McAdam responded with 12 straight saves, including another breakaway and a 2-on-1, and kept the Mallards’ attack at bay.
Missouri’s offense found its stride near the midway point of the first with Carter Verhaeghe on the set up for all-star defenseman Kevin Tansey’s fifth goal of the season. It was a wrist shot from the blue line that beat Quad City’s Adam Vay over the shoulder and knotted the score. Missouri had a couple of good looks in the final minute but Vay stopped Andrew Courtney and Tansey to keep the game tied.
The Mavericks opened the second period by registering the first five shots on goal, and netted a pair of those shots to break the tie and open a two-goal lead. Rocco Carzo tipped home a backdoor feed from Darren Nowick for a power play goal at 3:02 and put the Mavericks ahead 2-1. Verhaeghe picked up the secondary assist, which gave him five multi-point games in seven outings with the Mavericks this season.
It took the Mavericks just 2:12 to double the lead thanks to a Dan Correale wrister that got past Vay off of the rush. Nowick earned his second assist of the night on Correale’s seventh goal of the season and Dane Fox chipped in a helper to up his team-leading total to 21. At the other end of the ice, McAdam stopped each of Quad City’s eight shots in the frame to send Missouri into the third ahead by two.
The Mavericks started the third period with a goal by Fox just 24 seconds in and took control with a 4-1 lead. Nowick picked up his third point of the game with the lone assist. Quad City, though, began its rally at 7:19 with Pavel Jenys’s sixth goal of the season, and then pulled within one 4:02 later thanks to Jack Nevins. It took only 31 more seconds for the Mallards to tie it thanks to an unassisted marker by Alex Gudbranson.
Missouri out-shot Quad City 5-4 in overtime and generated several quality scoring chances, but Vay turned aside each shot, as did McAdam at the other end, to force a shootout. Radoslav Illo scored in the breakaway competition for Missouri, but it wasn’t enough to best Quad City’s scorers, Chris Francis and Parks.
McAdam was saddled with the loss in a 31-save effort. The Mavericks went 1-for-3 on the power play and 5-for-5 on the penalty kill.
Mark your calendar! The Mavericks return home on Saturday, Jan. 21 at 7:05 p.m. to face the Quad City Mallards on 90s night! The Mavericks will be wearing 90s-inspired jerseys that will be auctioned off live after the game. Groups of 15 or more are eligible for discounted tickets and preferred seating based on availability. Call the Mavericks at 816-252-7825 to book your group outing.