It was the equivalent to the Boston Marathon. A hockey game that actually was two games and then some. Alexander Valentin scored the game winning goal after two hours, six minutes and 45 seconds of hockey. That’s right it was in the forth overtime period when the contest was finally decided.
Lincoln took an early 1-0 lead but the Riders answered back with two first period tallies to take a 2-1 lead into the first intermission. The Riders Shawn Vinz then scored on a powerplay goal, which was set up on a Kevin Brooks pass. Kevin Brooks, who was not voted as one of the three stars but should have been, had three assists on the night. This after returning from a two game suspension.
Lincoln cut the lead to one with 3:52 left in the game on a short-handed goal by Ryan Potulny. Then with goalie Philippe Lamoureux pulled and Rider defensemen PJ Atherton in the box for tripping, Lincoln scored again on a 6-4 tally by Matt Wavra. This is what set up the longest game in USHL history.
Rider goaltender Bobby Goepfert cemented his place in Rider history, as well as USHL history, with 77 saves on 80 shots. Philippe Lamoureux had 56 saves on 60 shots. Valentin’s wrist shot was high to the glove side and Lamoureux almost stopped that one as well. It hit the top of his glove but had enough momentum to still find the back of the net. When it was all over the Riders mobbed Goepfert and Valentin but the celebration was short-lived as it was almost 1 in the morning and they had played a total of 2 games and half of another period. Not to mention they had to be in Lincoln to play game three in about 17 hours.