MUSKEGON, MI (WYTV)-The Youngstown Phantoms defeated the Muskegon Lumberjacks in a shootout Saturday night in Michigan, earning a 4-3 victory to snap a four game losing streak. It was also Youngstown’s first shootout win of the year.
Muskegon would draw first blood behind Matej Paulovic’s 17th goal of the year. USHL leading scorer Rem Pitlick set up Paulovic, who roofed a wrister over Phantoms netminder Ryan Bednard.
The Phantoms would respond in the final minute of the first frame, when Cam Morrison drove the net looking for a wrap-around. Morrison’s shot was saved by Joey Daccord, but the rebound came free to Kris Myllari, who beat a sprawling Daccord for his 5th goal of the campaign.
A highly contested second period saw Muskegon regain the lead on a fortunate bounce. Muskegon defenseman Mitch Eliot threw a wrist shot towards Bednard from the neutral zone, which took a funky bounce near the slot and skipped past Bednard. Eliot’s 5th tally this year was unassisted.
Paulovic would add another in the beginning of the final frame, giving the Lumberjacks a 3-1 advantage. The Phantoms would battle back to force overtime, beginning with another tally from Myllari. Myllari’s wrist shot somehow found its way through traffic and past Daccord to make it a one goal contest.
Youngstown would level the score minutes later after James Winkler refused to be denied, jamming a rebound under Daccord’s arm for his 11th goal of the campaign.
Both teams had chances to end the game in overtime, including a power play for Muskegon and a penalty shot for Phantoms Captain Matt Alvaro. 67 minutes wasn’t enough to separate the two sides, and Youngstown would head to its sixth shootout on the year.
Jason Cotton scored the lone goal in the skills competition to give Youngstown the victory.
The Phantoms will wrap up a six game road trip tomorrow with a Sunday matinée against the Team USA U-18s. Puck drop is set for 2 p.m. ET
COURTESY: YOUNGSTOWN PHANTOMS