Friday, April 5, 2013

B³ Postgame Recap: Omaha 3, Lincoln 4

The USHL "Good Life Cup"
Playoff bound!

The Lincoln Stars gutted out a big 4-3 win Friday night over the Omaha Lancers in front of another sell out crowd at the IceBox to clinch a spot in the 2013 USHL Clark Cup playoffs.

Click here to view the Poinstreak boxscore.

With Lincoln's win this evening, and Waterloo's 4-3 OT victory over the Dubuque Fighting Saints, the Omaha Lancers have been eliminated from playoff contention for the first time in 23 straight seasons.

Zach Aston-Reese put the team on his back Friday night as he scored a hat trick, including the game-winning goal.  Vinni Lettieri scored the other goal for the Stars.  Jackson Teichroeb won his fifth straight game as he stopped 29 of 32 to record his 16th win of the season.

The Stars got on the scoreboard early on in this game when Zach Aston-Reese scored his first goal at the 3:35 mark of the first period to give Lincoln a 1-0 lead.  Paul LaDue sent a quick centering pass to ZAR who simply tapped the puck into the open net past Omaha goaltender Alex Lyon.

Omaha tied the game up at 1-1 at the 15:28 mark of the first period, but ZAR answered with his second goal with 2:58 remaining to give the Stars a 2-1 lead going into the first intermission.  Omaha outshot Lincoln 12-10 in the first twenty minutes.

It was looking like neither team would scored in the second stanza, but the Lancers scored a big PP goal with only 4 seconds remaining in the period to knot the game up at 2-2 going into the second intermission.

Both teams traded goals in the first three minutes of the third period to make this a 3-3 game.  First it was Vinni Lettieri of the Stars scoring at the 1:44 mark, which gave Lincoln a 3-2 lead that only lasted 1:12 before the Lancers responded with a goal of their own.

Later in the final period, Zach Aston-Reese completed the hat trick with a quick wrister from the slot to propel the Stars to the eventual 4-3 win.  Try as they might, the Lancers could not get the puck past Jackson Teichroeb in the last few minutes of the game.

Omaha went 1-for-4 on the powerplay, while the Stars went 0-for-1.  Yes, that's correct...the Stars had ONE powerplay.  Now, I know the Lancers aren't particularly physical.  They are a bit on the soft side.  But by no means are they angels.  I have a hard time believing that they only deserved one minor penalty called against them.

The Lancers outshot the Stars 32-30 overall, but I thought Lincoln was the better team overall, and deserved to win this in regulation.  Omaha is a very opportunistic team.  They didn't generate a ton of really good chances, but their PP unit is one of the best in the USHL, so they are very efficient with the man advantage.  All season long, the Stars have been the better team 5-on-5, and I thought that was the case last night as well.

Also with the win, the Stars took home the "Good Life Cup" which is a new trophy created this season by the USHL that is awarded to the franchise with the highest winning percentage in games between the three Nebraska teams (Lincoln, Omaha, Tri-City). The Stars were nice enough to let me take a quick picture of the trophy after the game, and that photo is posted above.  This isn't the cup the Stars or their fans really want, though.  We want the Clark.

If you were at the game tonight, or watching at home, I'd love to hear your thoughts!  Comments are wide open.

Go Stars.

Edit:  I'm going to embed a video below that was put together by Brandon Anderson.  Brandon was able to put a Go-Pro camera on the helmet of USHL referee Stephen Reneau last night.  The video captures all three goals scored by Zach Aston-Reese from the big win against Omaha.  Very cool!


Anonymous said...

Good job boys!

Brandon Anderson said...

sorry about my boneheaded typo at the end of the video :) I suck lol