Americans show dominance in 5-1 win over Bozeman

Photo: Courtesy of Laura Richesin

By Kevin Scott

Box Score Game Sheet League Scoreboard Americans Team Statistics

GREAT FALLS, Mont., November 10, 2018 — A month ago, the Great Falls Americans (16-2-0-0) competed against the Bozeman Ice Dogs (8-6-2) for the first and only time this season leading up to tonight’s contest.

The game in Bozeman, Montana saw Great Falls skate by the Bozeman Ice Dogs, 5-3 in Haynes Pavilion. Payton McSharry and Jens Juliussen contributed one goal and two assists apiece in their ninth victory of the 2018-19 season.

The Great Falls Americans led 2-1 after two periods before lighting up the lamp for three more in the third period to defeat the Bozeman Ice Dogs 5-1 for their fifth victory in a row. The 715 spectators witnessed the Americans pick up their ninth win on home ice.

The Great Falls offense started out strong scoring two first-period goals. California native Luke Richesin and Jack Olson got the puck to newcomer Dylan Olson for the early lead by the Americans two minutes into the opening period. Bozeman responded with a goal by Isaac Smolden off the stick of Duncan McGarrah and Brady Kellerman to tie the game at 1-1. Later in the period, newcomer Justin Ohnstad, playing in his first game in Great Falls, gave Great Falls the go-ahead score with 8:17 left. Lindros Beard and Ben Rinckey gathered the assists on the second scoring drive for the Americans. Ohnstad, played in five contests for the North Iowa Bulls (NA3HL, West Division) before coming over to join the Americans. The penalty-free twenty-minute period saw 26 total shot attempts.

Both squads put up many shots during the middle period but couldn’t deliver on the scoreboard. Great Falls created 14 shots in the first two periods and Bozeman had nine in the period and 21 overall before the second intermission. A fast-paced period with just a single penalty by the Ice Dogs for hooking.

Cody Dearing, the 6’0” forward from Anchorage, Alaska, netted his second goal of the season in his fourth game with Great Falls after coming over from Binghamton Jr. Senators (NA3HL, Northeast Division). Dearing, who was on the Great Falls roster last season, tallied the unassisted goal 6:50 into the period. Minutes later, Lindros Beard got the puck between the pipes for his tenth goal with assistance from Ben Rinckey and Justin Ohnstad to stretch the lead for the Americans to 4-1. Justin Ohnstad, one of two new members of the Americans team this week, wasted little time accumulating stats as he scored the final goal with 85 seconds left to ensure the Americans kept their first-place ranking in the Frontier Division. Forward Cody Dearing and goaltender Viktor Wennberg were credited with one assist apiece.

Great Falls made 24 shot attempts in the third period as Great Falls out-shot Bozeman 52-30.

The teams couldn’t accrue any scoring drives during their combined five power play chances. Most of the penalties occurred in the third stanza with each team committing three.

Viktor Wennberg, the 5’11” goaltender from Stockholm, Sweden, swatted away 29 of the 30 shots that Bozeman attempted throughout the night.  His record is 6-1-0 and has amassed 222 saves so far this season. Bozeman’s AJ Ruskowski, originally from Traverse City, Michigan, allowed three third-period scores in a 12-minute span and had 49 saves while dropping his record in the net to 4-5-0-1.

NOTES: In addition to Justin Ohnstad, Great Falls also added Dylan Olson to the roster this week. The 6’0” forward is from White Bear Lake, Minnesota.

NEXT CONTEST: Great Falls will have one single game again this upcoming week as they continue their month-long homestand. The Missoula Jr. Bruins come to town on Saturday, November 17th starting at 7:30PM at the Great Falls Ice Plex.

Additional Media Coverage: November 12, 2018: Great Falls Tribune: Americans keep rolling with win over Bozeman