BLOOMINGTON, Ill. — Tyler Madden and Wojtek Stachowiak scored less than seven minutes apart in the third period and Zach Stejskal made 28 saves to help the Central Illinois Flying Aces come from behind and earn a 3-2 win over the Sioux City Musketeers on Friday night at Grossinger Motors Arena.
Trailing 2-1 after two periods, the Flying Aces (8-8-1, 17 points) struck just nine seconds into the third period to tie the score and then surged ahead at the 6:59 mark of the final period of regulation to end a brief three-game homestand with a victory.
Madden (Northeastern University) continued his impressive start to his rookie campaign with his sixth goal of the season on the first shift of the third period. Off the opening faceoff, Davis Bunz skated down the right wing into the offensive zone and promptly found Madden at the edge of the left circle. Madden collected the feed on his backhand, transitioned to his forehand and then ripped a wrist shot past the left pad of Sioux City goaltender Matt Jurusik. The assist was the second of the night for Bunz, who has three points in his last two games.
Stachowiak then pushed the Flying Aces ahead of the Musketeers (4-9-1-2, 11 points) only a short while later. Cameron Burke (University of Notre Dame) forced a turnover in the offensive end, and although he couldn’t control the puck, Stachowiak stepped up behind him and blasted a slap shot past Jurusik’s blocker side for what held up as the game-winning tally.
Stejskal turned in one of his best performances of the year to earn his fourth victory of the season. His first two periods were his busiest, as the University of Minnesota Duluth commit turned in 22 saves in the first 40 minutes. That included a flurry of big saves in the first period to keep the score tied at zero.
With Stejskal’s strong start to the game holding Sioux City off the board , the Flying Aces scored to take the game’s first lead. Max Andreev (Cornell University) fired a shot from the right corner that banked off Jurusik, giving Central Illinois a 1-0 lead with 2:06 left in the first period.
Sioux City responded to take the lead with a pair power-play goals, one in the final two seconds of the first period and one on a five-minute power play in the middle of the second period. But Stejskal didn’t allow any goals at even strength and held the Musketeers off the board in the final 26:29 of game time.
The Flying Aces finish off a two-game weekend with a road contest in Muskegon, Michigan, on Saturday night against the Lumberjacks. Faceoff is slated for 6:15 p.m. (CST). Fans can watch the game live on HockeyTV or listen for free on WJBC.com.