LOVELAND, CO. – Colorado forward Jean-Luc Foudy netted the game-winning goal 10:07 into overtime, as the Eagles defeated the Stockton Heat, 6-5 in Game Three on Friday. The win now cuts the Heat’s series lead to 2-1 and forces a Game Four at the Budweiser Events Center on Sunday. Forward Dylan Sikura notched two goals and an assist in the win, while defenseman Jordan Gross collected four assists on the night. Goaltender Justus Annunen earned his sixth victory of the postseason, making 37 saves on 42 shots.
Colorado would open the scoring when forward Shane Bowers fired a shot on the rush from the left-wing circle that would catch a piece of goaltender Dustin Wolf and hop into the back of the net. The goal was Bowers first of the playoffs and gave the Eagles a 1-0 edge at the 11:26 mark of the first period.
Just minutes later, Stockton forward Matthew Phillips would light the lamp with a wrister from the slot to tie the game at 1-1 with 6:06 remaining in the opening frame.
Heat forward Jakob Pelletier would take advantage of a breakaway when he fired a shot from the left-wing circle past Annunen to give Stockton a 2-1 advantage at the 17:35 mark of the period.
The Eagles would go on to outshoot the Heat, 16-12 in the period, as the Heat would carry their 2-1 lead into the first intermission.
A power play early in the second period would stretch Stockton’s advantage, as Phillips lit the lamp with a wrist shot from the right-wing circle to put the Heat on top, 3-1 just 3:57 into the middle frame.
Colorado would start to claw back when forward Ryan Wagner barreled his way to the top of the crease and flushed home a rebound to trim the deficit to 3-2 at the 12:02 mark of the period.
A drive down the left-wing boards would see Roland McKeown feed a pass to the far side of the crease, where Sikura would bash it past Wolf to tie the game at 3-3 with only 2:00 remaining in the second stanza.
Still deadlocked at 3-3 as the puck dropped on the third period, Stockton would jump back on top when forward Walker Duehr took advantage of an Eagles line change by darting from the blue line to the slot before burying a wrister to give the Heat a 4-3 advantage just 1:10 into the final frame.
Colorado would answer back on the power play when Sherwood unfurled a shot from the right-wing circle that would beat Wolf and tie the game at 4-4 at the1:58 mark of the period.
The momentum would swing back when a feed from behind the net from forward Martin Pospisil hit an Eagles stick and jumped into the back of the net to give the Heat a 5-4 edge with 16:04 remaining in the contest.
Needing an answer, Colorado would get one when Sikura fired a shot from the right-wing circle that would deflect off a Stockton defenseman’s stick and past Wolf, leveling the score at 5-5 at the 16:52 mark of the period.
With 60 minutes not enough to decide a winner, the game would shift to a sudden-death overtime. After killing off a McKeown tripping minor, Gross would hit Foudy with a stretch pass at neutral ice, sending Foudy racing into the zone where he would lift a backhander into the back of the net to give Colorado the 6-5 win at the 10:07 mark of the extra session.
The Eagles were outshot in the contest 44-37, as Colorado finished the game 1-for-1 on the power play and 2-for-3 on the penalty kill.
The Eagles will be back in action when they continue their best-of-five Pacific Division Final series against Stockton with Game Four on Sunday, May 29th at 7:05pm MT at the Budweiser Events Center. Playoff ticket packages are on sale now and can be purchased at ColoradoEagles.com or by calling the ticket department at (970) 686-7468.