CINCINNATI, Ohio- The series has moved to the Queen City and the home cooking must be good for the ‘Clones. The Walleye came to town and suffered another dispiriting defeat at the hands of the Cyclones. Now up 3-0, the Cyclones can clinch the series at home on familiar ice.
Toward the end of the first stanza the Walleye took an ill timed sit in the sin bin and gave the home team the man advantage. The Cyclones’ Charles Olivier Roussel obliged and scored the game’s first tally at 18:57 over the shoulder of Simpson.
The contest became a little more heated in the middle frame as tempers flared a bit more and Toledo played with more intensity.
At 6:59 Toledo knotted the score at one apiece on Max Nicastros’ shot that caught Houser out of position . Houser had looked a little sluggish and this time it resulted in a Walleye tally.
Shortly thereafter the Cyclones Josh Birkholz scored the first of his two goals to regain the lead. The goal came at 8:26 0f the period. The atmosphere remained tense as skirmishes erupted and penalties were assessed. There was no further scoring in the period despite a good effort by Toledo to again knot the score.
The chippiness continued into the third period as the Cyclones seemed to gain speed and intensity moving in for the kill. At 7:20 the Captain, Mathieu Aubin, scored the game winner over a sprawling Simpson.
Now at 3-1 the Cyclones played with renewed vigor, as the Walleye desperately wriggled on the hook.
Toledo forward Willie Coetzee swarmed the ‘Clones net to no avail as Houser came alive for save after save.
At 8:25 Birkholz turned on the jets, circled around the Toledo net, and scored a nifty wraparound goal on a surprised Simpson. With the score now 4-1 the Cyclones sensed a win in the works to the delight of the crowd.
At 19:20 Toledo scored on the power play in too little, too late fashion to close the deficit to a pair again. Cyclones defenseman Brian O’Hanley put the dagger in the Walleye twenty seconds later to end the scoring at 5-2.
The Cyclones can go for the sweep on Friday night in game 4 at US Bank Arena.
Follow us on Twitter @prohockeynews