Laberge Gives Stars 2-1 Series Lead in Double OT MarathonApr 21, 2018
ONTARIO, Calif. - It took five periods and more than four hours of play but with 2:22 remaining in the second overtime, Samuel Laberge scored the game-winner to lift the Texas Stars to a 5-4 win over the Ontario Reign in Game 3 of their Division Semifinals matchup.
Moments before Laberge beat Ontario's Cal Petersen on a clean wrist shot from the top of the slot, Mike McKenna's sprawling poke check ended a breakaway chance for Michael Mersch to keep the game tied. Ontario registered 66 shots on goal and the two teams combined for 110 total as the Stars won their first double-overtime game in franchise history.
Game 4 of the series will be Tuesday at 9 p.m. CST. Texas can punch their ticket to next round with a win as they lead the best-of-five, 2-1.
Travis Morin's second of the playoffs for Texas (2-1) knotted the score 3:32 into the third off Justin Dowling's centering pass. The Stars never led in the game until Laberge's game-winner and had to rally back from a pair of two-goal deficits to get the game to overtime.
McKenna stopped all 44 shots he faced in relief to earn the win. Petersen suffered the loss stopping 39 of 44.
Ontario opened the scoring with a pair of goals less than three minutes apart as Matt Roy buried one from the point at 8:30 and Sean Walker from the slot at 11:03. Remi Elie responded for the Stars with less than six minutes to play in the frame on a wrist shot off a faceoff for his first of the postseason and a 2-1 score.
Both teams continued to trade goals in period two as Michael Mersch made it a 3-1 score for the Reign deflecting home a power-play goal just 27 seconds in. Texas answered back quickly as Justin Dowling followed up his own rebound for a power-play goal at 5:32 and Colin Markison tipped Matt Mangene's point shot two minutes later to knot the score.
Mike Amadio made it a 4-3 score for the Reign off a Texas turnover at center ice with an odd-man rush goal at 9:19 of the second. Texas pulled goaltender Landon Bow, who finished with 18 saves on 22 shots in his first career postseason start.
Texas was 1-for-6 on the power play. Ontario finished 1-for-4.
Photo Credit: Ontario Reign