Boise - Three different Idaho Steelheads scored goals and netminder Jerry Kuhn made a pair of terrific saves late in the third period Wednesday night, preserving a 3-2 win in front of 2,960 fans at CenturyLink Arena in Boise.
Idaho (22-20-5) improved to 16-1-1 when holding its opponent under three goals and also came up with its sixth victory of the season over Alaska (32-12-6), the defending Kelly Cup champions.
After a lightning-fast, scoreless first period, the Steelheads struck early in the second on the power play. Alaska defenseman Steve Ward overskated a loose puck behind his own net, allowing Jacob Cepis to pick it up. Following a sensational save by Goaltender Adam Courchaine, Patrick Kennedy was in position for the rebound and found the back of the net for his fifth goal of the season to give Idaho a 1-0 advantage. The goal snapped a string of eight games without a power-play goal for the Steelheads.
Idaho extended its lead early in the third when Aaron Lewicki spun a shot from the right-hand circle under Courchaine. His tenth of the season made it 3-1.
The lead would hold up thanks to two huge saves from Jerry Kuhn. The first came before Alaska's second goal, when Kuhn's leg pad denied Tyson Marsh at the right post. The second came in the final two minutes when Wes Goldie, one of the premier scorers in the history of the ECHL, found himself all alone at the top of the crease but Kuhn was able to deny the shot.
Idaho and Alaska will square off again Saturday night at CenturyLink Arena.