Local Sports Journal

The third period continues to be kind to the Muskegon Lumberjacks this season.

Six of their eight victories have resulted from key goals in the final 20 minutes with the outcome still in doubt.

That trend continued Saturday when the Lumberjacks broke open a tied game with two third period goals and beat the host Youngstown Phantoms 3-1.

Muskegon improved to 8-4-0 on the season, good for 16 points and second place in the USHL’s Eastern Conference. They are two points behind conference leader Cedar Rapids.

“We played well for a road game,” said Jacks coach Todd Krygier. “The third period has been good for us, other then a couple of games we have competed well.”

The Phantoms’ Maxim Letunov opened the scoring at the 9:18 mark of the second period.

Muskegon’s Matheson Iacopelli tied the game at 1-1 with a goal at the 12:05 mark of the second period. Steven Merl and Robbie DeMontis had assists.

Griffen Molino scored a shorthanded goal at the 12:00 mark of the third period, giving the Lumberjacks a 2-1 lead. Joseph Cecconi was credited with the lone assist.

Muskegon’s Matej Paulovic gave the Jacks an insurance goal at the 16:16 mark of the final period.

Goalie Eric Schierhorn stopped 26 of 27 shots to collect the win for Muskegon. Youngstown outshot the Lumberjacks 27-22.

The Lumberjacks visit Tri-City next weekend on Friday and Saturday nights.