Sioux Falls, SD (KWSN)- An early first period goal from the Fargo Force was all it would take the club from up North to hold off the Sioux Falls Stampede for a 1-0, Game 3 shutout in front of 3,805 at the Arena Thursday night. The win gives Fargo a 2-1 lead in the best-of-five Western Conference Finals series and puts the Stampede on the brink of elimination come Sunday night.
Forward Dave Gust’s game-winner came 3:47 into the game and was backed up by a marvelous performance from Fargo netminder Cameron Johnson, who blocked all 31 Herd shots tossed at him. On the other end Herd goaltender Charlie Lindgren allowed a lone goal on 18 Force attempts while his club came up empty on two power play tries.
“Over the 60 minutes you have to make more plays than they did, and we didn’t tonight,” said head coach Cary Eades. “It wasn’t from a lack of effort.”
Fargo’s offense dominated the early part of the first period, barraging Lindgren with shots and taking and early 1-0 lead at 3:47 when force winger Dave Gust deflected a shot in past Lindgren’s right side. The Force couldn’t double the margin despite two straight power play chances, and the Herd eventually took the shot on goal lead before the period ended.
The Herd thought they had the game tied when Ryan Siiro wristed a shot from the right circle, but the goal was waived off by officials, leaving the Arena in a hurricane of boos.
“I thought it hit the post pretty clean,” said captain Ryan Siiro, whose Game 5 goal in the first round all but sealed the Western Conference Semifinals for his team. “The goalie was in the way, but I saw it hit the post.”
That would be the closest to touching the scoreboard the Herd would get, as Johnson and the Fargo defense remained strong for the rest of the second period and entire third duration for a tight 1-0 victory. The series will wait until Sunday evening to resume, with Game 5 taking place at the Arena if the Herd can take Game 4.
“Ideally you play tomorrow night,” said Eades. “The schedule’s been what it’s been all year, and we have to be ready Sunday night at six o’clock.”
Game 4 is this Sunday night at 6:05 PM at the Sioux Falls Arena. Tickets start as low as just $6 for Game 4, click here for details. Tickets can be purchased through the Sioux Falls Arena Box Office. Fans who can’t make the game can listen live on KELO News Talk 1320-AM and 107.9-FM and online at www.kelo.com.
Courtesy: Sioux Falls Stampede