The Lumberjacks scored three straight goals to take a two-goal lead near the midway point of the third period, then held on to defeat the Tri-City Storm 6-5 at the Viaero Center in Kearney, Nebraska. Muskegon is now 9-7-2 on the season, good for 20 points in the USHL’s Eastern Conference. The conference is a tight race as just five points separate third-place Youngstown to sixth in the standings and the final playoff spot.
Muskegon and Tri-City each fired in three goals in an action-packed opening period. The Storm opened the scoring at the 3:12 mark of the first period on a goal from Cameron Briere. Muskegon tied the game 1-1 with a Jack Galanek tally 6:07 into the first period.
Tri-City recaptured its lead 11:35 into the first period with a goal from Alex Bales, but the Lumberjacks responded with two goals to take their first lead of the contest. Sacha Boisvert (16:20) and Ryan Koering (17:24) both found the back of the net to give Muskegon the advantage. The Storm tied the contest 3-3 with a goal from AJ Lacroix at the 18:21 mark of the opening stanza.
Tri-City took a 4-3 lead with a goal from Dallas Vieau 8:48 into the middle period before the Lumberjacks went off for three straight goals. Wilson Dahlheimer scored his first goal as a Lumberjack 12:07 into the second period to tie the contest 4-4, then Hunter Anderson closed out the middle period scoring 16:55 in to give Muskegon a 5-4 lead heading into the third. Justin Solovey completed the three-goal barrage 12:47 into the third period to give Muskegon a 6-4 lead. Ryan Smith scored for the Storm with seven seconds remaining to close out the scoring.
The Lumberjacks outshot Tri-City by a 41-30 margin. Muskegon scored the lone power play goal, going 1-for-4 with the man advantage while killing off all five Tri-City power plays. Paxton Geisel earned the win in net for Muskegon, stopping 25-of-30 shots, while Boisvert led the Jacks with a goal and two assists, while Koering and Solovey each had a goal and an assist.
Muskegon returns home next weekend to play back-to-back games against the Madison Capitols. The puck drops at 7:00 p.m. on Friday and Saturday nights.