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Grizzlies fall on road on last-second goal

The Wausau Cyclones scored with fewer than 5 seconds to go in the third period Saturday to beat the Rochester Grizzlies and split a weekend series.

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Rochester Grizzlies
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WAUSAU, Wis. — The Rochester Grizzlies appeared headed to a weekend sweep of a North American 3 Hockey League series here through nearly two periods on Saturday night.

But the Grizzlies let a two-goal lead slip away, and the Wausau Cyclones scored with 3 seconds remaining in regulation to beat Rochester 3-2 at Marathon Park.

The Grizzlies outshot the Cyclones 40-25, but as has been the case throughout the season, an inconsistent effort, or a lack of playing well for a full 60 minutes, hurt Rochester in the end. Hayden Shoemake put back a rebound of a shot from the point with 3.2 seconds remaining to snap a 2-2 tie and give the Cyclones just their fifth win 20 games.

Wausau is now 5-12-3 overall and sits in fifth place in the NA3HL Central Division. Rochester drops to 16-5-1 and with 33 points has seen its lead atop the division over the Oregon (Wis.) Tradesmen — who have two games in hand — trimmed to one point.

Rochester started well on Saturday, building a 2-0 lead on goals by Maksim Lakic late in the first period and Max Clark 5:46 into the second.

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But Wausau clawed back, as Ricky Nelson scored with 1:56 to go in the second to cut Rochester's lead to 2-1 after two periods.

Gage Vierzba then scored just 1:48 into the second period to tie the score 2-2. That's how it stayed until Shoemake's late heroics.

Grizzlies goalie Tate Cothern made 22 saves in suffering his first loss of the season in seven starts. Mitch Miscevich made 38 saves for the Cyclones to earn the victory.

The Grizzlies return home next weekend, where they'll host the Peoria (Ill.) Mustangs at 7:05 p.m. Friday and Saturday at the Rochester Recreation Center.

BOX SCORE: Wausau Cyclones 3, Rochester Grizzlies 2

Jason Feldman is the sports editor of the Post Bulletin. In addition to managing the four-person sports staff at the PB, Jason covers high school football, golf and high school and junior hockey. Readers can reach Jason at 507-281-7430 or jfeldman@postbulletin.com.
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