PRESCOTT VALLEY, AZ (January 11, 2012) – It was a star-studded evening in Prescott Valley, Arizona on Wednesday night as the 2012 CHL All-Star Game took place at Tim’s Toyota Center with the host Arizona Sundogs taking on a team of CHL All-Stars. The stars were bright as the CHL All-Stars defeated the Sundogs by a 6-4 score in front of 4,479 fans.
Quad City’s Brandon Marino earned the game’s Most Valuable Player honors with the game winning goal and three assists (along with a +4 plus/minus rating). The MVP honor for the home team went to Kevin Petovello who scored a pair of goals. The Co-MVP awards featured a Kindle Fire for both players presented by Sher-Wood Hockey Inc.
The Sundogs equaled the most shots ever in a CHL All-Star Game out-gunning the CHL team 75-51.
There was great flow in the opening period with both teams seeing numerous scoring chances, as you would expect in an all-star game. The first shot of the game came from Todd Robinson (Evansville) which actually was more of a pass that Scott Reid had to be sharp on kicking it away.
In fact, Reid was sharp throughout most of the first period stopping the first 16 shots he faced before allowing a goal by Matt Robinson (Wichita) off a terrific feed from Todd Robinson. That would tie the game at one goal apiece as the Sundogs got on the board first with a nice shot from Kevin Petovello, assisted by Luke Erickson and Zach Carriveau at the 2:04 mark of the opening period.
The Sundogs had the best scoring chances early on with goaltender Nick Boucher (Fort Wayne) stopping Craig Macdonald on one rush and then later avoiding damage on a 3-on-0 rush and a 3-on-1 rush that led to Petovello having an empty net to shoot at but just missing the mark.
The All-Stars would take their first lead at the 16:22 mark with Bruce Graham making an unreal move to get Reid out of position and allow him plenty of room to tuck the puck into the net. The lone assist on the goal went to Brandon Marino (Quad City).
The Sundogs outshot the All-Stars 23-22 in the period with Reid making 20 saves and Boucher finishing the period with 22 saves as the All-Stars led 2-1 after a fast-paced 20 minutes.
It didn’t take long for the Sundogs to pull even as Jesse Perrin centered a pass to the front of the net at the with a lot of traffic bearing down on Boucher and the puck redirected and found its way into the cage tying the game at two.
The All-Stars would regain the lead at the 7:35 mark with Matt Robinson finding space to the side of the net with a good bounce leading the puck to his stick. Robinson’s goal is his fifth in all-star game play and his second of the night. Marino and Riley Weselowski (Rapid City) earned the assists.
Just before the two clubs changed goaltenders midway through the game, the Sundogs would tie it up. Samson Mahbod made a great pass to an open Petovello and he buried the shot for his second goal of the night.
Boucher would leave the game with 36 saves on 39 shots and Reid stopped 24 of the 27 shots he faced.
Goaltending may have been the story of the middle frame with Boucher robbing several Sundogs including Tyler Matheson twice and Luke Erickson, all three chances right in front of the net.
Reid’s replacement, Mike Spillane, made maybe the best two saves of the night at the 15:00 mark of the period stopping a blast from the circle and then following that up with a sprawling save on the rebound.
Then in the final second of the period, Mark Guggenberger (Texas) somehow got his stick on a Sundogs breakaway by Craig Macdonald keeping the game tied after 40 minutes. The Brahmas rookie net minder stopped all 10 shots he faced in the period.
The All-Stars took the lead back with a nice rush off a Sundogs turnover. The play ended with a Brett Smith (Fort Wayne) one-time off a feed from Brett Lutes (Dayton). Todd Robinson also earned an assist, his second of the game.
The home team wasn’t done as with 6:40 remaining in the final period, Samson Mahbod tied the game getting the first shot past Guggenberger ending his bid for perfection.
Marino capped his starry night with a beautiful goal scored at the 16:01 mark as he danced through the defense and backhanding a shot over Spillane.
Jeff Terminesi (Tulsa) added an empty net goal putting the game away giving the All-Stars the decision.
Guggenberger was outstanding earning the win with 35 saves. Spillane took the loss stopping 21 of 23 shots.
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