INDEPENDENCE, Mo. — The Missouri Mavericks picked up four of a possible six points on their three-game homestand, but couldn't close out the sweep. They dropped a 4-2 decision to the Wichita Thunder on Saturday night at Silverstein Eye Centers Arena, and their record moved to 13-16-5.
The Mavericks fell one game behind the Thunder in the "Visit Independence, Visit Wichita" Cup with the loss. Their record in the series is now 2-3-0.
Click here for tonight's box score.
The opening 20 minutes between the Mavericks and Thunder on Saturday night were less eventful than what the Silverstein Eye Centers Arena crowd experienced the night before. The teams combined for 22 shots on goal, but just one hit paydirt and there was one penalty assesed in the frame. Wichita opened the scoring at 9:50 when Gerrad Grant collected a loose puck in front of Mavericks goalie Josh Robinson and lifted in his fourth goal of the season.
The Mavericks had two high-quality chances to tie the score but Drew Owsley stopped each to keep Wichita in front. Kyle Schempp was alone with the puck below the hash marks, but Owsley made a sprawling save on the Mavericks' center. Owsley also made a reaching glove save on an Andrew Courtney bid from between the circles.
The second period opened with tight checking and few opportunities for either offense to get in gear. But a broken play allowed Wichita to cash in the frame's first solid scoring chance. Kevin Tansey made a diving play to break up a stretch pass in the neutral zone but the puck bounded into open ice and was tracked down by Zach O'Brien. The Thunder forward hit Blake Tatchell with a backdoor pass that he tapped in for his third goal of the season. In the final minute of the second Wichita turned a Mavericks giveaway into a 3-0 lead. O'Brien netted his second assist of the game with the helper on Alexis Loiseau's 15th of the season at 19:08.
Forced to play from behind in the third period for the second night in a row, the Mavericks applied pressure early and often in the final frame. They registered the first three shots on goal, and the third broke Owsley's shutout bid. Tansey scored his second goal in as many games by finishing off the rebound of a Carter Verhaeghe shot. The assist was Verhaeghe's third point (1g, 2a) in two games on the weekend.
Tansey added to his point total with an assist on Courtney's third goal of the season at 17:02 of the third. The goal brought Missouri within one of the tying score, but Wichita's Matt DeBlouw scored an unassistted empty-net goal to seal the win.
Robinson ended the game with 19 saves, while the Mavericks did not receive a power play during the game and went 1-for-1 on the penalty kill.
Mark your calendar! The Mavericks return home on Saturday, Jan. 21 at 7:05 p.m. to face the Quad City Mallards on 90s night! The Mavericks will be wearing 90s-inspired jerseys that will be auctioned off live after the game. Groups of 15 or more are eligible for discounted tickets and preferred seating based on availability. Call the Mavericks at 816-252-7825 to book your group outing.
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