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RECAP: Fresno Moves Into First Place in the Western Division



Fresno Monsters @ Valencia Flyers


Fresno 6, Valencia 5 – The Fresno Monsters allowed a two-goal lead to slip away late in the game, but rebounded to win, 6-5, on a goal by Jeremy Velazquez :42 into overtime.


Velazquez, acquired from the Cheyenne Stampede two weeks ago, not only had the game-winner he also contributed three assists in the game.


Danylo Moroz’ goal 5:59 into the second period gave the Flyers a 3-0 lead, but the Monsters stormed back, scoring the next five goals to go from down 3-0 to ahead 5-3.


Valencia’s Bryan Gowin stopped the bleeding at the 13:04 mark of the third period, getting the Flyers within a goal, and Dylan San Agustin scored the tying goal with 2:46 left in regulation.


Overtime started with :45 left on a Fresno power play, so the Monsters skated 4-on-3, and put their skating and skill on display.


Velazquez came through the neutral zone with the puck and sent it to Joel Brotzge along the right-wing boards at the Valencia blue line. He gained the zone, then hit Petr Philippov with a cross ice pass. Phillippov skated towards the Flyers net then, when he got to the left circle, passed it back to Velazquez in the slot and he buried the game-winner.


It was a tough loss for Valencia’s Mack Willy, who made 14 of his 29 saves in the third period.


Tyler Mathews picked up the win for Fresno, making 25 stops.


Dustin Truex scored twice for Fresno while Moroz had two goals and two assists in the game for Valencia.


Fresno Monsters @ Ontario Avalanche


Fresno 5, Ontario 3 – The Ontario Avalanche had leads of 2-1 and 3-2, but the Fresno Monsters tied it up, then scored two quick goals late in the game for a 5-3 win on Sunday.


Nicholas Aberanthy gave Ontario a 3-2 lead when he scored with :43 left in the second period.


Fresno’s Jackson Bauml scored midway through the third period to tie it up, setting the stage for the Monsters’ clutch finish.


Petr Philippov cycled the puck from the right circle down into the right corner to Jeremy Velazquez. He skated to the front of the net, fading away from the crease enough to give himself a good shooting angle, and sent a shot low stick side to give Fresno the lead back, 4-3.


The Monsters got an insurance goal less than a minute later. Logan Domagala put a shot on net from the point that was partially blocked, but the puck dribbled to Ty Wright at the bottom of the right circle and the and he backhanded it past Ontario’s Connor Duffy (36 saves).


Fresno’s Max Karlenzig stopped all 14 shots he faced in the first period and ended the game with 34 saves in all.


--- Compiled by Scott Harrington for Harrington Sports Media