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The Fuel closed out a four-game season opening home-stand on Saturday. This weekend provided plenty of strong competition for the Fuel, handing the Cincinnati Cyclones their first loss on Friday, and facing the Toledo Walleye on Saturday. This Saturday game was the first of eight meetings between Indy and Toledo this season. Yesterday’s promotion was Military night. The Fuel auctioned off game-worn sweaters post-game to the BOSMA Foundation.

FIRST PERIOD

Unlike Friday’s game, the Fuel scored the first goal of the game. The Rupert twins were at it again, seeming to be an unstoppable force for the Fuel. Matt Rupert’s second goal of the season came 3:11 into the opening period and Ryan Rupert has now assisted on both of his brother’s goals this season. Just three minutes later, Dimitry Osipov was sent to the box for holding. At 8:39, Toledo’s Bryan Moore was sent to the box for hooking. That made 22 penalty minutes in three games. He is averaging 10 PIM per game. Toledo went back to the box as TJ Hensick sat for two minutes for slashing at 16:57. The Fuel had a 1-0 over Toledo as the teams went back to the locker room.

SECOND PERIOD

Just like the first period, the Fuel struck first in the second. Thanks to Connor Moynihan’s second goal of the season, the Fuel took a 2-0 lead over the Walleye. Moynihan has a point in all three games of his professional career, which began last Friday night. The Walleye got their first goal of the game from Shane Berschbach. It was his first goal of the season and 78th career goal. Just a minute after their tally, the Walleye had to play short-handed hockey when Berschbach was sent to the box for a faceoff violation. The last penalty of the period came from Matt Rupert for tripping with less than a second left in the period. Shot totals kept climbing, but each goalie kept their nets clear. The period ended with the Fuel leading in shots on goal and goals, by a score of 2-1.

THIRD PERIOD

The third period opened up with Matt Rupert in the box for his tripping call. Unfortunately for Indy, Toledo scored the first goal of the period, tying up the game at 2-2. The game-tying goal came from Brendon Kotyk at 4:03 in the third period. That was his first goal of the season and 54th of his ECHL career. Just one minute after the Toledo goal, Ryan Rupert was sent to the box for slashing, which was his first penalty of the season. It came 5:07 into the third period. The Fuel was back in the box once again when Quentin Shore was whistled for high sticking. This was his second penalty of the season.

Toledo took a timeout with 98 seconds left in regulation after Mathew Thompson was called for hooking. This led to a power-play goal for the Walleye, courtesy of Berschbach’s second goal of the game. Indy pulled Tomkins from goal with 37.8 seconds left in regulation. Luckily for Indy, Toledo’s Greg Wolfe was sent to the box for hooking and they got a 6-on-4 opportunity for the last 30 seconds of regulation. Four seconds into the power play, Brett Welychka scored his second goal of the season, sending the game into overtime.

OVERTIME

Both teams earned a point, but overtime was needed to determine who would walk away with the extra point. Tomkins had to make some spectacular saves on multiple breakaway attempts from Toledo. In the last minute of play, Tomkins had a huge blocker save, giving his team another chance at the win. After that save, Quentin Shore put home the game-winning goal, pushing the Fuel past the Walleye by a final score of 4-3. The win moves the Fuel to 3-1-0 on the young season.

The three stars of the game were:

  1. Quentin Shore
  2. Matt Tomkins
  3. Matt Rupert

The Fuel play the Kansas City Mavericks in Kansas City next Saturday with an 8:05 PM puck drop. This will be the first of three matchups between the two teams this season. The Mavericks are 2-0 to start the season. The Fuel will be home again on 30 October to play the Idaho Steelheads.

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