By Kevin Scott
HELENA, Mont., November 23, 2014 — Two days after their upset loss to Glacier, the Great Falls Americans were hoping to get back to their winning ways with a trip to the Capital City to face the Helena Bighorns for a Sunday matinee.
Top-ranked Great Falls (16-2) has out-scored the third place Bighorns (12-4) in both of their earlier meetings this season by a 5-2 margin.
Great Falls netted two goals in the final period to pick up a 3-1 win over the host team on Sunday afternoon at the Helena Ice Arena. Lucas Lomax and Robert Kalata each scored in the final stanza to run their road record to 7-0.
Both teams appeared to be evenly matched in the opening period. The Americans held a slim advantage on shots on goal (10-9) and neither franchise was able to convert their only power play opportunity during the first twenty minutes.
Great Falls did not waste any time getting in the scoring column in the second period. Hunter Garris and Dylan Garton found an open Marvin Simmons for his fourth goal of the year during a power play 93 seconds after the first intermission to give the Americans a 1-0 lead. Garris added his third assist while Garton recorded his seventh of the season. Both defenses came up big to prevent any more scoring for the last 18 minutes of the period. Helena had five more shots on goal (24-19) than Great Falls.
Lucas Lomax, the team’s scoring leader, chipped in his eleventh goal in 13 games early in the final period for coach Jeff Heimel’s squad. Reed Link and Zack Mese each produced assists on the scoring opportunity that took place in the first two minutes. Helena’s Cody Vanthournout cut the deficit to 2-1 as he scored against Americans goaltender Evan Hauser a few minutes after Lomax’s score. Brandt Miller and Matt Mohar each added an assist during the successful power play opportunity. The Americans would ensure their third victory over Helena this season on a Robert Kalata tally. Assisting on the final score was Adam Apangalook and Lucas Stover.
Each team took advantage by scoring on one of their power plays during the NA3HL Frontier Division matchup.
Evan Hauser received his tenth victory of the season by stopping 32 of the 33 shots he faced against the Bighorns offense. Grant Martens ended his afternoon with 25 saves for Helena.
The Americans and Bighorns combined for 61 shots on goal.
NEXT CONTEST: Great Falls will take a road trip to Bozeman, Montana to challenge the Bozeman Ice Dogs on Saturday, November 29, 2014. The Americans only game this week will start at 7:30PM from Haynes Pavilion.
|Period 1||Period 2||Period 3||Final|
First Period – NO SCORING
Second Period – 1, Great Falls, Marvin Simmons (power play) (Hunter Garris, Dylan Garton), 1:33.
Third Period – 2, Great Falls, Lucas Lomax (Reed Link, Zack Mese), 1:50. 3, Helena, Cody Vanthournout (power play) (Brandt Miller, Matt Mohar), 5:06. 4, Great Falls, Robert Kalata (Adam Apangalook, Lucas Stover), 16:35.
Shots on Goal – Great Falls 28, Helena 33.
Power-play Opportunities – Great Falls 1-for-5, Helena 1-for-4.
Attendance – 232
Additional Media Coverage: November 24, 2019: Great Falls Tribune: Americans bounce back, beat Helena