By Nick Hartman:
(RAPID CITY, South Dakota): After winning three games in a row at home, and leading the series 3-2, the Mavericks had to travel back to Rapid City to play game six. The Mavericks were ready for a big game against the Rush and were ready to continue the strong play. The Mavs were just 60 minutes away from the biggest win this season but it would be prove to be a tough match against a tough opponent. From the start, the Mavericks showed their intensity and readiness to win. They never once trailed the game and only allowed one goal. At the end of the game, the final score was 5-1 with the Mavericks “Crushing the Rush” and advancing to the Semifinals.
“I thought we had incredible focus defensively,” said Mavericks’ Head Coach Scott Hillman. “We took care of our zone first and had a great night offensively with Thinel, Tochkin and Miller leading the way. Also an outstanding performance by Mathieu Corbeil in net.”
Kellen Tochkin scored the first goal of the game, 9:44 into the first period, after a great set-up from Kenton Miller. Exactly two minutes later, Ryan Jardine scooped up the puck and sent in a set-up feed to Sebastien Thinel who sent the puck deep into the net.
The Mavericks were leading 2-0 going into the second period and where ready to strike further. The Mavericks had a slight break down in defense at the 5:30 mark and the Rush took advantage of it. Scott Wray sent a one-timer through Mathieu Corbeil and into the net for a goal. Wray’s goal was assisted by Kyle Peto, Dan Gendur. The Mavericks quickly fixed the mistake and took the game from there. At the 11 minute mark, Sebastian Thinel slid a wrist-shot past, Rush goaltender, Tim Boron. This goal was assisted by Kellen Tochkin and Ryan Jardine. The final goal of the second period was scored at 16:56 mark, when Kellen Tochkin sent a wrist-shot through Tim Boron’s five-hole. The goal was assisted by Kyle Hood and Kenton Miller. The second period ended with the Mavericks leading 4-1
Tim Boron was not in the net to start the third period, after giving up four goals, after Danny Bottachio took over for him. Bottachio allowed one goal, at the 7:30 mark, when Kellen Tochkin slid the puck past Bottachio clinching the win for the Mavericks. The players lined up and shook hands after the game, a tradition in hockey.
When the game concluded, the Mavericks had won 5-1 and clinched a semifinal spot to play against the Allen Americans. The Mavericks will play the Americans starting Sunday, April 14. They will return home to play Wednesday, April 17 and Friday, April 19 and Saturday, April 20 if necessary.