LAFAYETTE — It’s better to be lucky than good sometimes.
The Louisiana IceGators certainly had lady luck on their side Sunday.
After taking advantage of mistakes and power play opportunities and dodging several close calls, the IceGators squeezed out a 3-1 victory over the Macon Mayhem.
The victory pulled the IceGators into a tie for sixth place in the SPHL standings and puts them one points out of a tie for third place in the league.
The IceGators return to action at 7:05 p.m. Wednesday against the Mississippi RiverKings.
“It was a special teams battle,” IceGators coach Drew Omicioli said. “We went two-for-six on the power play and killed off seven penalties. I thought we were sloppy in the first period. Macon scored when one of our wings wasn’t in the right position, and (Mayhem center Lucas) LaBelle made a great shot. After that, we played OK. (Blake) Hietala gave us a big goal. Otherwise, we killed well-deserved penalties the entire time. The officials called an outstanding game tonight. Fortunately for us, our penalty kill was effective.”
LaBelle’s goal came 4:35 into the first period when he launched a shot from the point off a feed from Jeff Sanders. Vadim Guskov also assisted on the play.
The IceGators’ power play came up big in the latter stages of the game.
Hietala tipped in a Jake Hauswirth one-timer to tie the game with 6:49 remaining in the second period. Dan Cornell gave Louisiana the lead three minutes into the third period with a power play wrist shot from the right point.
Zac Frischmon iced the game when he scored an empty net goal from the IceGators’ blue line with 20 seconds left in the game.
“That was a great goal by Cornell,” Omicioli said. “He’s been playing great and has been a rock for us. Our defensive core was great. (Goalie Adam Courchaine) played one of his better games, controlling rebounds and making big-time saves.”
The IceGators now seek revenge against a Mississippi RiverKing squad that won in the Cajundome last week on a controversial goal that was allowed after the IceGators’ net had been knocked off its moorings.