LAS VEGAS, Nev. – Eric Lampe scored four goals on five shots, helping lead the way as Las Vegas defeated Colorado, 9-3, tying the Eagles’ record for most goals allowed in a game. Judd Blackwater also had a strong night statistically, netting two power-play goals as the Wranglers went 3-for-8 with the man advantage.
The Eagles got off to a good start when Akim Aliu finished off a give-and-go with Tommy Maxwell 4:12 into the opening frame. But the Wranglers scored three goals in just under two minutes to take a 3-1 lead into the first intermission.
Lampe tied the game at 13:39 when he took a back-door pass from Peter MacArthur and put it past Kyle Jones. Just 25 seconds later, Robbie Smith picked up his first professional goal when the Wranglers converted a 3-on-2 rush. And just over a minute and a half after that, Lampe increased his league-leading goal total when he cut across the doorstep from right to left and snapped a shot into the twine.
The Wranglers continued to roll in the second period, and Lampe was again at the center of everything. Just 56 seconds into the frame, MacArthur stole the puck along the left boards and pushed a pass across the ice to a wide open Lampe for his third goal of the game.
Colorado’s top goal-scorer, Jack Combs, cut Las Vegas’ lead in half at 5:16 with his second shorthanded marker in as many nights. On the play, Jason Beatty took a shot from the right point and it bounced off the endboards where Combs quickly banked it off of Joe Fallon’s leg from behind the net.
But the Wranglers answered with just five seconds left on that power play when Blackwater beat Jones from the right circle, chasing the Eagles’ starting netminder who stopped 11 of 16 shots in 26 minutes and 21 seconds of action. Things didn’t get much better for Jones’ replacement, Mike Garman, as Las Vegas made it 6-2 with their second power-play goal in a row at 9:33 when Scott Campbell put home a rebound.
Colorado cut Las Vegas’ lead to 6-3 at 13:50 of the second period, following a faceoff in the left circle of the offensive zone. On the play, Combs took a backhand shot from the slot and Riley Nelson put home the rebound. But Lampe wouldn’t let the Eagles gain any more momentum as he notched his fourth goal of the game with a shot from the point just over two minutes later.
Blackwater got his second goal at 3:02 of the third period — giving the Wranglers three goals in as many power play chances — when he blasted home a rebound from the right faceoff dot. And at 16:51, Adam Miller capped off the scoring by putting home a nifty drop-pass from Ned Lukacevic in the low slot.
The Eagles will finish their three-games-in-as-many-nights swing when they play in Ontario, Calif. Saturday night.
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