Firebirds outlast Wranglers in triple OT

Photo: Ian Kelly

Ryker Evans scored 11:22 into the third overtime to give Coachella Valley a 3-2 victory over Calgary in Game 3 of the Pacific Division finals at Acrisure Arena on Monday night.

With a 2-1 lead in the best-of-five series, the Firebirds can advance to the Western Conference finals with another win in Game 4 on Wednesday night.

On the winning goal, Kole Lind won a puck battle along the boards near the blue line and sent a pass cross-ice to Evans, who wristed a shot through traffic that beat Dustin Wolf to end the game at 11:54 p.m. PDT after four hours and 45 minutes. With 51:22 of overtime played, it was the 13th-longest game in American Hockey League history.

The visiting Wranglers opened up a 2-0 lead on first-period goals from Adam Klapka and Jakob Pelletier, but the Firebirds responded as Gustav Olofsson cut the deficit in half at 5:28 of the second period and Max McCormick leveled the score on a power play 2:59 into the third.

Joey Daccord finished with 60 saves for the Firebirds, shutting out the Wranglers over the final 95:59 of the game. Daccord made 35 saves in OT alone, including 19 in the first extra period when Calgary outshot Coachella Valley by a 19-3 margin.

Wolf turned aside 48 shots for the Wranglers, 19 in OT.

Pacific Division Finals (best-of-5)
P1-Calgary Wranglers vs. P2-Coachella Valley Firebirds
Game 1 – Thu., May 11 – Coachella Valley 6, CALGARY 3 | Recap
Game 2 – Fri., May 12 – CALGARY 3, Coachella Valley 2 | Recap
Game 3 – Mon., May 15 – COACHELLA VALLEY 3, Calgary 2 (3OT)
Game 4 – Wed., May 17 – Calgary at Coachella Valley, 10:00
*Game 5 – Fri., May 19 – Calgary at Coachella Valley, 10:00
*if necessary… All times Eastern