By Tribune Sports Staff
March 25, 2017
CODY, Wyo. – Cosimo Yapello took a feed from Curt Ruschmeyer less than halfway through the first overtime, giving the Yellowstone Quake a 3-2 win over the Great Falls Americans in the deciding game of the best-of-three NA3HL Frontier Division Finals Saturday night at the Riley Ice Arena.
Yellowstone’s Pablo Pantoja helped send the game into the extra frame when he scored the game-tying goal just 30 seconds into the third period.
The Quake, 44-5-0-3, will represent the division at the NA3HL Silver Cup Championships at the Canlan Ice Arena in Romeoville, Ill., March 29-April 2. The Americans, who were going for their third straight trip to the national tourney, ended their season at 41-5-3-3.
Max Doner gave the Quake the lead when he scored his third goal of the series midway through the second stanza, but the Americans rebounded with two goals of their own in a span of just over three minutes late in the period.
Payton McSharry’s fourth goal of the playoffs came off an assists from Tanner Congdon at 15:36, with Logan Parsley tally finding the back of the net at 19:46.
Nick Nast was in goal for the Americans. Nick Ottenbacher was in net for the Quake.
They won Game 1 of the series in Cody 2-1, then came home to the Ice Plex Friday night and dropped a 4-1 decision.
Jeff Heimel, in his fifth year behind the Americans’ bench, is 174-73-13. Heimel is a Minnesota native who turned the Americans’ program around after team owner Jim Keough hired him in 2011. The Great Falls franchise struggled mightily in the years before Heimel’s arrival and won just one game in 2010-11.
The start of Saturday’s match, originally slated for 7 p.m., was delayed by 30 minutes. An Americans supporter said on a Facebook post that the Yellowstone team bus had to pick the Americans up, but did not indicate what the problem was with the Americans’ bus.
Great Falls 0 2 0 0 — 2
Yellowstone 0 1 1 1 – 3
First period – No scoring.
Second period – 1. YEL, Max Doner 3 (Ian Doner, Tony Dahlberg), 11:05. 2. GF, Payton McSharry 4 (Tanner Congdon), 15:36. 3. GF, Logan Parsley 1, 19:46.
Third period – 4. YEL, Pablo Pantoja 5 (Max Meyer, Hunter Ruschmeyer), :30.
First overtime – 5. YEL, Cosimo Yapello 1 (Ruschmeyer), 9:15.
Shots on goal by period – GF, 12-10-10-0–32. YEL, 11-13-16-2–42.
Power-play opportunities – GF, 0-3. YEL, 0-2.
Goalies/saves – GF, Nick Nast, 42 shots/39 saves. YEL, Nick Ottenbacher, 32/30.
Story Courtesy: Great Falls Tribune: Overtime goal ends Americans’ season (March 25, 2017)