Stephen R. Sylvanie / Special to the Sun
Saturday, March 29, 2014 | 10:33 p.m.
The Wranglers hosted the Alaska Aces for the second of a three-game weekend homestand on Saturday night at the Orleans Arena. The two games could not have ended more differently.
The first period of Saturday night saw the Wranglers again outshot by a near 2-1 margin, though goaltender Travis Fullerton thwarted 17 Alaska attempts to keep the game scoreless after one period.
The first shot of the second period for the Aces was a top corner snipe taken by Evan Trupp to give the Aces the 1-0 lead very early in the period. Wranglers forward Justin Bernhardt would tie the game for Las Vegas with his fourth goal of the season at 12:36 of the second period with a wrist shot from the left faceoff circle that bested Alaska goaltender Aaron Crandal. Trupp would score his second goal of the night for the Aces with just under five minutes to go in the second to retake the lead for Alaska.
The third period would again see a heavy dose of offensive pressure from the Aces, eventually resulting in a goal from Jordan Morrison with 2:18 to play in the game to give Alaska a 3-1 lead. The final 1:47 of the third period may go down as one of the most heroic in Las Vegas Wranglers history as Adam Hughesman and Chad Nehring would score goals :30 apart to tie the game with 1:17 to play in the third. With the crowd of over 6,000 re-energized, Wrangler Matt Tassone would beat the glove of Aces goaltender Aaron Crandal to give Las Vegas a 4-3 lead with :37 remaning in the game, and Las Vegas would leave the ice with the dramatic win over first-place Alaska.
Tomorrow the homestand against Alaska concludes with an afternoon game at the Orleans Arena with the puck dropping at 2:05 p.m.