The Fargo Force (5-10-2-1; 13pts) snapped the Tri-City Storm’s (7-10-0-0; 14pts) 10 game winning stream handing them just their third loss of the season with a big win in OT. The Force scored two unanswered goals to tie it up in the third followed by a game winner from Force D-man Joe Palodichuk.
It was a quiet first period until the Storm broke through scoring with just 3:01 to play in the period. A little over a minute later, Nate Benoit added another putting his team up 2-0 with under two left in the opening frame. The Force regained the momentum as the period closed thanks to a, as Thomas Weis went 5 hole on a 1v1 breakaway goal just after the faceoff.
The Storm went 2/5 on powerplay opportunities both of which came in the second period at the 11:17 and 14:10 mark. Moorhead, MN native Luke Gramer added his first goal of the season during the second as well with an absolute snipe from the blue line that flew past the glove side of Storm goaltender, Chase Clark. The second period ended with a 4-2 Tri-City lead, the Force led in SOG in the second 14-9.
Force captain Tyler Rollwagen made it a 1-point game with just over 10 minutes left to play. He backhanded it in short side off a beautifully timed pass from Kyle Smolen. Shorthanded and down one with under two minutes remaining Bret Link forced a turnover and stickhandled through two Storm defenders, flipping one in top shelf back handed to tie the game up at 4’s apiece. Force goaltender Louden Hogg went 30/34 in tonight’s contest and made some huge saves in the third period including an unreal stop on a 2-on-1 opportunity.
In overtime both teams served a 2-minute penalty early, leading to 3-on-3 hockey for the first two minutes of the 5-minute overtime. With just over two minutes remaining Link drew the Storm defenders to himself in the high slot and dished the puck over to Force defenseman Joe Palodichuk. Palodichuk fired it in five-hole for his first goal in a Force jersey and a huge OT game winner.