INDIANAPOLIS - The Fuel hosted the Iowa Heartlanders for the final time this season on Saturday night. The Fuel came away with the 2-1 victory. Additionally, the coveted annual Weiner Dog race resulted in an undisputed win from the appropriately named ‘Champ’ who claimed his eighth title as the Fuel celebrated Pucks & Paws Night.
The first period began slowly with each team taking a minor penalty in the first half of the frame but killing them off.
Despite neither team scoring, the Fuel outshot the Heartlanders 16-3 in the first period. Colin Bilek took an interference penalty at 19:57 that would spill over into the second period.
The Fuel were able to kill off the Bilek penalty and soon after Kyle Maksimovich scored his first professional goal with the help of Luc Brown and Logan Nijhoff.
Chris Cameron gave Iowa another power play with a tripping penalty at 2:59, thirty seconds after the goal but Indy killed it off. At 8:58 in the second period, Iowa’s Kevin McKernan took a two minute penalty for interference.
At 14:59, Dan Winslow took a boarding penalty giving the Fuel another power play opportunity.
Once again, the Fuel took a late penalty that would carry over to the next period. This time, it was Bryan Lemos at 19:29 sitting for interference.
McKernan also took a ten minute misconduct call after the end of the period for abuse of officials.
The third period opened with a minor penalty to Indy’s Chris Cameron which Iowa immediately capitalized on with a goal by Jesse Jacques to tie up the game.
At 6:40, Iowa’s Jake Durflinger took a penalty for tripping that the Heartlanders were able to kill off.
About a minute later though, the Fuel took back the lead with a goal by Seamus Malone in his first game back in two months. Maksimovich collected an assist on this goal as well along with Zach Vinnell.
With about a minute to go, Iowa took a timeout and pulled their goaltender from the net for the extra skater. With a quick chance with three seconds to go, Andrew Bellant tried for the empty net goal but was just slightly right of the net.
They dropped the puck for one more faceoff before time expired and the Fuel claimed the victory 2-1 over the Heartlanders.
The Fuel return to Indiana Farmers Coliseum tomorrow, Sunday, April 9 as they take on the Cincinnati Cyclones for Family Fun & Kids Eat Free Day. Tickets are available HERE.
Offer from Outback Steakhouse:
The Indy Fuel, proud ECHL affiliate of the National Hockey League’s Chicago Blackhawks and the American Hockey League’s Rockford IceHogs, have returned to Indiana Farmers Coliseum for their ninth season. Check out all the Fuel’s promotions, theme nights and get your tickets now HERE.