Chicago Steel split exhibition games with Muskegon Lumberjacks


The Chicago Steel continued their exhibition schedule with a home and home with the Muskegon Lumberjacks over the weekend. On Friday, Muskegon got the best of Chicago 5–3 in Muskegon. In Chicago on Saturday, the Steel beat the Lumberjacks 4–3, in overtime.

Chicago struggled early on Friday, as forwards Alexandros Gaffney and Danil Gushchin opened the scoring for the Lumberjacks. The lead would not last long as the Steel answered back with two goals of their own.

Forward Josh Doan buried the Steel’s first goal after a nice feed from defenseman Jimmy Dowd, Jr. The goal, at the 12:28 mark of the first period, was followed by a forward Elis Hede goal less than five minutes later. The tally, assisted by forward Gunnarwolfe Fontaine, tied the game at 2–2 heading into the first intermission.

Chicago would take their only lead of the game early in the second period after Brendan Brisson fired home a shot off a rebound in front of the net. That lead would not last long as forwards Alex Konovalov and Tanner Edwards scored 1:50 apart to give the Lumberjacks a 4–3 lead.

After the Edwards goal, Chicago goaltender Reilly Herbst was replaced in net by Jack Williams. Williams would surrender one goal on 15 shots to finish the 5–3 loss on the road.

Back home at Fox Valley Ice Arena on Saturday night, both teams had their early chances in the first period but could not capitalize.

Muskegon forward Tanner Edwards scored the first goal of the game less than four minutes into the second period, beating Chicago netminder Ian Shane. The goal gave Muskegon the 1–0 lead.

Shane would be replaced by goaltender Victor Osman after stopping nine of 10 shots on the night. The goaltender change was part of the game plan and not due to performance. Osman looked sharp in his action, stopping 14 of 16 shots the rest of the contest.

Top Phase II draft pick Sean Farrell scored his first goal in a Steel uniform to tie the game at 1–1. The unassisted goal was followed up by another unassisted goal when 16 year old forward Matthew Samoskevich also scored his first goal for the Steel this exhibition.

Chicago took their 2–1 lead into the third period but would relinquish an early goal to Muskegon forward James McIsaac and then surrendered the lead when Alex Gaffney beat Ostman midway through the period.

Down 3–2, Fontaine buried his first of the preseason, on the power play, at the 14:06 mark of the period to force an overtime frame. The goal was assisted by Hede and Samoskevich.

In overtime, Brisson finished off the contest with a power play goal only 1:31 seconds into the extra frame. The goal, assisted by defenseman Luke Reid and Farrell, gave the Steel redemption for their loss the prior night.


Chicago will take the ice for another exhibition contest against the Madison Capitols, on home ice, on Sept. 20 at 7:05 p.m. CT. Both teams will face off again the following night in Madison, also at 7:05 p.m. CT.

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