The Kansas City Mavericks and Allen Americans were back in Allen Friday night for Game Four of their series. Entering Game Four, the Americans led the series 2-1, but it was not an easy lead for the Americans to obtain in the series. The Americans won the first game with a score of 3-2, and the second game was won by the Mavericks 3-2. The Americans took the third game, 1-0 in overtime. Last night’s game was won by the Mavericks with a late goal in the third period, 2-1.
The first period started out with a lot of back and forth between the teams, and not very many good, quality scoring chances. The scoring started 5:58 into the first when Kris Myllari was left open in the middle of the zone. Myllari shot the puck and scored to give the Americans a 1-0 lead. His goal was assisted by Grant Hebert and Stefan Fournier. After Myllari’s goal, it was back to back-and-forth hockey, but with more quality scoring chances. With only 38.7 seconds left in the first, the Mavericks were able to get the puck to Loren Ulett, who found a small opening in front of the goalie. Ulett shot the puck through the opening, scoring to tie the game at one. Ulett’s goal was assisted by Theo Calvas and Cade Borchardt. The Mavericks outshot the Americans 10-7 in the first.
The second period was a quiet period with no goals. Unlike the first period, both teams had multiple quality scoring chances, but the goalies stayed on their game and did not let the puck find the back of the net. Both teams had powerplay opportunities in the first period, but neither team was able to capitalize on their man advantages. Again, the Mavericks outshot the Americans, but this time it was only 11-10.
The third period was a lot like the second period, as it was a pretty quiet period. The third was just like the rest of the game, with a lot of back-and-forth hockey again with both goalies continuing to stand on their heads. This game came down to what team/goalie would make a mistake first. This mistake happened when the Americans turned over the puck in their own zone to Ryan Harrison. Harrison shot the puck, and it deflected off of an Allen skater and into the back of the net. The goal was assisted by Luke Stevens. This would do it for the game as the Mavericks took game four, tying the series at two. The Mavericks again outshot the Americans 12-8.
After outshooting the Americans in all three periods, the Mavericks outshot the Americans 33-25 in the game. Maverick’s goalie Shane Starrett made 24 saves on 25 shots, while Americans’ goalie Kevin Mandolese made 31 saves on 33 shots. Special teams tend to be what can make or break a team in the playoffs. In this game, both teams went for a combined 0/10 on the powerplay, with the Mavericks going 0/6 and the Americans going 0/4 on the powerplay. The Mavericks and Americans are back in action for Game Five tonight at 7:05 CST.