Elite Prospects

Stars Erase Two-Goal Deficit to Beat Omaha

March 11, 2023 – United States Hockey League (USHL) – Lincoln Stars News Release

The Lincoln Stars swept the weekend home-and-home set with a 4-3 shootout win over the Omaha Lancers on Saturday night at the Liberty First Credit Union Arena.

Antonio Fernandez scored the only goal of the shootout and Lincoln scored twice in the third period to force overtime. Tanner Ludtke scored the game-tying goal with 52.4 seconds remaining in regulation to send the game to overtime.

Lincoln’s (28-18-3) penalty kill shined with a perfect 7-for-7 performance, including killing one in overtime. Dashel Oliver scored his shorthanded goal of the season 2:46 into the game on the first penalty kill of the night for the Stars eighth shorthanded tally of the season, third-most in the USHL. Omaha (13-26-5-3) went 0-for-10 on the man advantage over the weekend and the Stars remain first in the USHL on the penalty kill at 84.7-percent.

“I thought our 200-foot clears were really good,” head coach Rocky Russo said. “We didn’t turn pucks over. You can tell when when we’re struggling a little bit on our kill. We’re not getting pucks out and we’re trying to do too much and I thought we did still generate some chances here and there but we were smart about it. We weren’t being selfish, we were making sure pucks went 200 feet and we were bringing momentum back to our bench from the kill.”

Mason Marcellus recorded two assists to move to one point away from 100 in his USHL career. He forced a turnover and set up Oliver on a two-on-one rush to open the scoring. Marcellus next apple was a cross-crease pass to Doug Grimes on the Stars’ first power play of the night at the 4:24 mark of the third.

Inbetween the Stars’ first two goals the Lancers scored times. Adam Cardona evened the game up at the 12:11 mark of the first and Libor Nemec and Reese Laubach struck in the second at the 5:48 and 9:09 marks, respectively. Omaha outshot Lincoln 15-3 in the second and took a two-goal lead into the third period.

Grimes pulled the Stars within one in the third period. Lincoln pulled the net on another power play with just over a minute to go to and then Ludtke scored his second in as many days shortly after the penalty expired. Ludtke’s first shot was denied but the rebound came right back to him and he made no mistake to score his 26th of the season.

Fernandez was the second shooter in the shootout and cashed in by cutting to the net quickly before easing up and beating Omaha netminder Kevin Pasche glove side. Cameron Whitehead stopped all three shots in the shootout to improve to 4-0 in shootouts. He also has not allowed any goals on 10 attempts in shootouts this season.

Saturday’s win was the Stars’ fifth of the season when trailing after two periods. Lincoln has now won three of its last four games and hosts Omaha again next Saturday for Epilepsy Awareness Night at the Ice Box at 6:05. The Stars travel to Des Moines first on Friday for a 7 p.m. game against the Buccaneers.

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The opinions expressed in this release are those of the organization issuing it, and do not necessarily reflect the thoughts or opinions of OurSports Central or its staff.

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