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Michigan, Topeka take control of series

Bismarck Bobcats 2 @ Austin Bruins 1 (OT) (Best of five series tied, 1-1) – Both goalies were sharp, but Bismarck’s Stanislav Dzakhov scored 7:11 into the extra period to even the series 1-1 and give his team home-ice advantage in the best-of-five series. Dzakhov’s goal set off an emotional celebration for the Bobcats, who didn’t lead until he scored. Bruins goalie Nick Lehr (20 saves) kept Bismarck off the board for the first 50 minutes, a night after surrendering four first-period goals. Bobcats goalie Aaron Nelson was sharp, though, after allowing five goals in a Game 1 loss. He gave up one to the Bruins’ leading scorer, Jay Dickman, just 4:23 into Saturday’s game, but that was it for the Bruins, as Nelson finished with 33 saves. Dickman scored the lone goal for Austin after Lucas Kohls’ attempt from the side of the net was blocked by a Bismarck defender and the puck slid into the slot. That’s how the score remained until Bismarck tied it on Huba Sekesi’s power play goal at 10:06 of the third period. Boxscore

Topeka RoadRunners 3 @ Amarillo Bulls 1 (Topeka leads best of five series, 2-0) – Two 3rd period goals propelled the Topeka RoadRunners over the Amarillo Bulls on Saturday night, giving Topeka a 2-0 lead in the series. The RoadRunners can close out the series in Game 3 of the best of 5 South Division Final set for Thursday night at Kansas Expo Center Landon Arena. The Bulls got the start they needed in the opening 20 minutes. Brendan Vetter scored :26 seconds into the contest when his power play blast from the point beat goaltender PJ Bridges. In the 2nd period, the RoadRunners scored on a power play as Mike Gornall converted a rebound at the side of the net. It was a fast paced third period with very few whistles. Overtime was looming on the horizon, but the RoadRunners grabbed a 2-1 lead when Yu Hikosaka tipped home a shot in front of the net. The Bulls pulled their goaltender in the final minute play, but couldn’t score. Gornall collected the puck inside its blue line and scored into an empty net with one second remaining to round out the scoring. PJ Bridges made 32 saves in the win, while Collin Delia took the loss, making 33 saves. Boxscore

Michigan Warriors 3 @ Port Huron Fighting Falcons 0 (Michigan leads best of five series, 2-0) – After 60 more minutes of not being able to solve Michigan goalie Trevor Gorsuch, the Fighting Falcons find themselves on the brink of elimination in the North Division Finals. Gorsuch stopped 28 shots for his second straight shutout and Tyler Groat scored two goals to lead the Michigan Warriors to a 3-0 win Saturday against the Falcons in Game 2 of the series at McMorran Arena. Game 3 of the best-of-five series is Friday night at Perani Arena in Flint. Groat scored goals in the first and second periods, while TJ Stuntz added an empty-net goal with just over two minutes remaining. Falcons goaltender Max Milosek stopped 27 shots in the loss. Gorsuch has stopped all 83 shots he has seen from the Fighting Falcons in the first two games. Boxscore

Wenatchee Wild 2 @ Fairbanks Ice Dogs 4 (Best of five series tied, 1-1) – The Fairbanks Ice Dogs scored the final three goals of the game to even up their best of five series with the Wild thanks to a 4-2 win on Saturday. Ross Olsson put the Ice Dogs up 1-0 at the 4:29 mark of the first period but two Wild goals from Brendan Harris and David Powloski just less than two minutes apart put the Ice Dogs down a goal not even halfway through the first. The Ice Dogs would tie the game at 2-2 before the end of the period as Jacob Hetz scored at the 12:48 mark of the first period on a 2-on-1 with Viktor Liljegren. Wyatt Ege and Nick Hinz scored in the second period to put the Ice Dogs ahead. Ege beat Wild goalie Chase Perry off a rebound to give the Ice Dogs a 3-2 lead before Hinz fired a wrist shot past Perry’s glove side on the rush. Perry made 27 saves on Saturday night after shutting out the Ice Dogs 4-0 on Friday night. Kevin Aldridge made 18 saves for Ice Dogs, including one on Alex Rauter who was alone in front of the crease with 4:31 left in the game. Boxscore

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