Kupari Nets Game-Winner in Third Period to Upend Colorado

Kupari Nets Game-Winner in Third Period to Upend Colorado, 3-2

Apr 28, 2021

LOVELAND, CO. – Ontario forward Rasmus Kupari scored the game-winning goal on a breakaway at the 7:03 mark of the third period to propel the Reign to a 3-2 win over the Colorado Eagles on Wednesday. Sheldon Dries and Ian Scheid both netted goals in the loss, while rookie forward Alex Newhook collected a pair of assists. Ontario goaltender Matthew Villalta earned the victory in net, making 29 saves on 31 shots.


The first period saw each team put nine shots on net, but a series of highlight reel saves from Eagles goaltender Hunter Miska would allow the two teams to head to the first intermission with game still deadlocked at 0-0 after 20 minutes.


As the game shifted to the second period, things on the ice would open up, as Reign forward Arthur Kaliyev would snap home a rebound from the right-wing circle on the power play to put Ontario on top, 1-0 just 1:57 into the middle frame.


It would only take 34 seconds for the Reign to strike again, as Brett Sutter found forward Boko Imama with a pass in the slot and Imama would blister a shot past Miska. The tally would stretch Ontario’s advantage to 2-0 at the 2:31 mark of the period.


Needing an answer, Colorado would get one on the power play when Dries lifted a backhander from the side of the crease into the back of the net. The goal now gives Dries nine points in his last nine games and sliced the Reign’s lead to 2-1 with 10:31 remaining in the second stanza.


Scheid would knot things up with only 1:00 left to play in the period when he snapped a wrister from the right-wing circle past Ontario goaltender Matthew Villalta to tie the contest at 2-2.


Heading into the third period the Reign would hop back on top when an Eagles turnover at the Ontario blue line set up Kupari to dash down the right-wing boards before cutting to the slot and snapping a shot into the back of the net. The tally would give the Reign a 3-2 advantage with less than 13 minutes to play in the game. Colorado would pull Miska in the final minute of the contest, but would not be able to generate an equalizer, falling by a final score of 3-2.


Each team finished the night going 1-for-6 on the power play, as Ontario outshot the Eagles, 33-31.


Colorado will return to action when the Eagles host the Ontario Reign on Friday, April 30th at 7:05pm MT at the Budweiser Events Center. Fans can catch every game this season live on “The Home of the Colorado Eagles,” 92.9 The Bear or on AHLTV. 

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