A big third period comeback gave the Fargo Force a 3-2 victory over Team USA in front of 2,884 fans at Scheels Arena.
“In complete respect, we’re a better hockey team than they are,” Head Coach John Marks said. “When we moved the puck and share the puck it worked.”
Fargo took the first lead of the night 5:15 into the first period. CJ Hayes took a shot on goal and Shane McMahan was there to put home the rebound and give the Force the 1-0 lead. Zach Yon and CJ Hayes were credited with the assists.
Chuck Bennis was called for a penalty with 2:15 to play and 30 seconds into the power play, Team USA tied up the game when Ryan Lindgren took a shot from out by the blue line.
In the second period Zach Yon had a breakaway shot with 12:14 remaining but it was denied by Team USA’s goalie Joseph Woll.
Then with 6:44 to play in the second period, Patrick Khodorenko gave Team USA the 2-1 lead when he shot the puck from the right side and it bounced into the net off the top of the crossbar.
But the third period was comeback time for the Force. With 8:20 to go in the period, Team USA’s Griffin Luce was ejected from the game after being charged with a major penalty and game misconduct for head contact putting the Force on the power play for 5 minutes.
Denis Smirnov scored 18 seconds into the power play off a one timer from Justin Baudry and Mason Morelli and it was a tie game at 2-2.
Three minutes later TJ Roo gave the Force the 3-2 lead assisted by Colton Poolman and Shane McMahan.
“Our future is very bright as a hockey team,” Marks said. “The young kids we’ve got are real good players.”
The Force take on Team USA again tomorrow for Throwback Night as the Fargo Force become the FM Bears.
Tickets can be purchased at the Scheels Arena box office open tomorrow at noon, online at www.tickets300.com, or by calling 701-364-3672.