Sioux Falls Stampede 2 vs. Des Moines Buccaneers 3 (SO)
The day started off with plenty of excitement as just eight minutes into the game a big check into the boards resulted in a broken pane of glass and a slight delay. Des Moines struck first after the delay as Doug Clifford opened the scoring for the Bucs. The lead became 2-0 when Dan DeSalvo scored early in the second frame. Sioux Falls would battle back as Sam Coatta pulled his team within one then evened the game in the third period with his second goal of the game. The game went to a shootout (no overtimes in the Fall Classic) where the Bucs prevailed, scoring on two of four attempts. Goaltender Michael Shibrowski stopped four of five Stampede shooters to claim the victory.
Omaha Lancers 3 vs. Dubuque Fighting Saints 4
Dubuque didn't waste any time as Tyler Lundey scored just 29 seconds into the contest, but the Lancers got the best of the period getting goals from Ken Babinski and Adam Chlapik. In the second period, Chlapik gave the Lancers a two-goal lead with his second goal of the day. Dubuque turned things around as they scored three power play goals over the final 10 minutes of the second frame to take the lead and hang on for the victory. Matt Morris earned the victory in goal for the Saints.
Cedar Rapids RoughRiders 7 vs. Lincoln Stars 0
Sam Warning and Jayson Megna each had a pair of goals as the RoughRiders flashed plenty of offense in their opening game of the Fall Classic. Warning and Megna scored just 16 seconds apart in the first period to build a 2-0 lead. Cedar Rapids would pour it on in the third period scoring four goals, including markers by Thomas Fallen, Justin Kovacs, and Stu Wilson. Goaltender Brady Hjelle earned the shutout victory stopping all 24 shots by Lincoln.
Chicago Steel 0 vs. Fargo Force 3
Goaltender Zane Gothberg stopped all 24 shots he faced to earn the shutout win for Fargo and Jimmy Mullin collected two points (1g, 1a) to lead the Force to an opening win in the Fall Classic. Returning forward Colten St. Clair netted a goal for the Force and Nate Arentz also tallied a goal in the second period.
Tri-City Storm 2 vs. Sioux City Musketeers 6
In the feature game of the evening, the home Musketeers found plenty of scoring to earn the victory over the Storm. Ondrej Zehnal scored a pair of goals for Sioux City while teammate Max McCormick netted two power play tallies. Caleb Herbert and Ryan Carpenter each netted goals for the Musketeers and goaltender Jake Hildebrand earned the win for the home club. Storm forward Cody Murphy opened the scoring and teammate D.J. Vandercook closed out the scoring, but six goals sandwiched in between was too much to overcome.
(Nathan can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org)