WASILLA, AK – The Bismarck Bobcats got 46 saves from goalie Ryan Massa but saw the Alaska Avalanche pull away late for a 4-2 win at Curtis C. Menard Memorial Arena Saturday night.
The loss drops the Bobcats to 0-5-2 to open the 2009-2010 season.
The game opened with a familiar foe starting the scoring as Avalanche goals leader Zach Smith poked a loose puck under Bobcat netminder Ryan Massa at the 8:03 mark of the first period for a 1-0 Alaska lead.
The goal was Smith’s third in as many games against the Bobcats.
Bismarck would draw even mid-way through the second period when forward Emerson Auvenshine, in his first game of the year for the ‘Cats, roofed a transition wrist shot over Alaska goalie Kale Robertson for a 1-1 tie.
Alaska pulled back ahead three minutes later on the power play with a Matt Friese tally off a loose puck on the side of Massa’s net.
Two and a half minutes later, the Avalanche extended their lead to 3-1 as Berkley Scott whipped a rebound past Massa just seconds after a Bobcat penalty had expired with 5:44 left in the middle frame. Scott has now scored five goals in the last three games against the ‘Cats.
The Bobcats, however, responded quickly with a goal from Jason Fabian, who redirected a Nick Jensen effort into the Alaska net 2 seconds later to cut the Alaska lead to 3-2 heading into the second intermission.
The two teams traded chances to open the third period before Smith netted his second of the game 8:42 into the third, pushing the lead to 4-2.
The Bobcats attempted to rally, but any ideas of a comeback were derailed by a pair of late penalties for the visitors, sealing the final margin.
Despite the 46 saves, Massa saw his record slide to 0-3-1 on the young season.
For Alaska, Kale Robertson made 18 saves and improved to 4-0-0 on the year.
Also playing his first game of the year for the Bobcats was defenseman Ilya Kravtchouk, acquired earlier in the week from the Burnaby Express of the BCHL. Kravtchouk finished with a plus-two rating Saturday.
The Bobcats continue their three-game series against the Avalanche Sunday with an 8:00 PM matchup from Menard Memorial Arena in Wasilla, AK.
The game will be broadcast locally on the radio home of Bobcat Hockey, Super Talk 1270, KLXX-AM, and worldwide at BismarckBobcats.com via B2 Networks. The pre-game show for Saturday’s game will get underway at 7:30 PM.
You won\’t want to miss any of the games this season, so order your Season Tickets, Family Packs and Group Night’s today by calling the Bobcat Hockey Office at 701-222-3300 or by e-mailing the office for more information at firstname.lastname@example.org.