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Fighting Saints' Rally Ends in Shootout Loss to Gamblers on Opening Night

By Jordan Kuhns, 10/09/21, 10:45PM CDT

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Saints come back from 3-0 down to take momentary lead; fall in skills competition

DUBUQUE, Iowa — It was one to remember. The Dubuque Fighting Saints rallied from a 3-0 deficit after one period of play with a third period surge. However, Green Bay tied the game with 20 seconds remaining in regulation, and the Gamblers went 2-for-2 in the shootout to pick up a 5-4 win over the Saints on Saturday night at the Mystique Community Ice Center.

Jackson Hallum and Cam Lund scored on their respective shootout opportunities, and goaltender Rastislav Elias denied Connor Kurth and Ryan Beck on their chances to cement the win. It did not come easily for Green Bay, as their early 3-0 lead came crumbling down hard and fast.

Dubuque put forth a goal scoring clinic in just over five minutes of game time. Connor Kurth’s breakaway tally gave the Saints life by closing the lead to just two heading into the room for the third period, where the momentum swung wildly.

With Hallum in the box for a hooking penalty taken 200 feet from his net, William Hallén set up Tristan Lemyre on the power play to cut the lead to one. Then, the new Ohio State commit, Stephen Halliday, worked his magic into the attacking zone, sent on his way by Ryan Beck. He toe dragged around a defender and beat Elias clean for his second goal of the season.

Stuart capped the comeback at 4:54 on the rebound of a shot by rookie Mikey Burchill to give the Fighting Saints a momentary lead.

Dubuque appeared poised to steal the two points. Austin Oravetz blocked five shots on one penalty kill alone. Elias was pulled for the extra attacker. Out of the timeout, Hallum forced overtime with his second goal of the game, and overtime came to a close with nothing to show for it.

In just less than three minutes of elapsed game time, Green Bay flew out to a three-goal advantage. Hallum continued his torrid pace after scoring four goals the night before by opening the scoring on a breakaway. Brody Lamb added a goal two minutes later, and John Mittelstadt buried the biscuit into an open cage after a fortuitous bounce found his stick on the receiving end of a shot block.

The Gamblers could have extended their lead further with Hallum once again, but goaltender Paxton Geisel stood in his way. Hallum was awarded a penalty shot with 16 seconds remaining in the first period. The Vegas Golden Knights prospect’s deke to the backhand was thwarted by the Saints’ netminder, who made 20 saves in the effort.

The Fighting Saints picked up a point in the standings in the shootout loss. They are back in action Friday, October 15 against these same Gamblers for 80s Night, sponsored by Family Beer & Liquor. Tickets are available at DubuqueFightingSaints.com.