Forward Jared Linnell's overtime goal lifted the Fairbanks Ice Dogs to a 5-4 Game 4 triumph and a 3-games-to-1 series victory in the West Division finals of the North American Hockey League's (NAHL) Robertson Cup Playoffs on Thursday night.
With the win, the Ice Dogs earn one of the league's four berths to the Robertson Cup Championship Tournament, which will be held from May 3-7 in Topeka, Kan. As hosts, the Topeka RoadRunners hold an automatic bid to the tournament.
Forwards Alexander Jensen (goal, assist) and Tayler Muson (two assists) both recorded two points in the Ice Dogs' victory, and goaltenders Joe Phillippi and Steve Perry (win) combined to stop 35 shots.
The RoadRunners won Game 3 of their South Division finals series over the Amarillo Bulls in overtime on Thursday, 3-2. Forward Jordan Davis scored the game-winning goal in the extra session and an assist, and forward Kyle Sharkey also picked up a goal and an assist. Between the pipes, Rasmus Tirronen turned aside 30 shots. Game 4 of the series is set for Friday night.
The best-of-five Central Division finals series between the Coulee Region Chill and defending Robertson Cup champion Bismarck Bobcats is tied 1-1, as is the North Division final showcasing the St. Louis Bandits and Michigan Warriors. Game 3 of both series is scheduled for Friday night.
View the Robertson Cup Playoffs Bracket here.
View the Robertson Cup Playoffs Format here.
(Nathan can be reached at email@example.com)