Christian Stoever shuts the door in a 3-0 shutout of Sioux Falls.Stoever shut down the Stampede. - Christian Stoever shuts the door in a 3-0 shutout of Sioux Falls.

The Phantoms faced Sioux Fall for the second time, just a day after being beat 4-1 by the same team. What a difference that 24 hours makes. In what looked like a total flip from the previous night, the Phantoms managed to beat the Stampede 3-0 and earned Christian Stoever his first shutout in the USHL.

The Phantoms definitely looked like they had more energy to start the game. They put up the first goal of the game at 8:36 when Craig Needham took a shot on net that Stampede netminder Alec Calvaruso made the initial save but the rebound landed in the low slot, where Dalton Messina came crashing into a herd of defenders and jammed the puck passed the goaltender to put the Phantoms up 1-0. The Phantoms outshot the Stampede 11-6 in the first period.

In the second frame, Brett Murray would score an unassisted, shorthanded goal when Calvaruso went behind the net to retrieve a puck dumped the length of the ice. Murray pursued the puck and stripped Calvaruso behind the net and managed to wrap it around for a goal with 0:30 left on the clock.

Chad Veltri covers the puck in a 4-1 loss to the Sioux Falls Stampede.Veltri covers up. - Chad Veltri covers the puck in a 4-1 loss to the Sioux Falls Stampede.

After a bit of controversy last weekend, last night looked like the Phantoms could have used a little bit of "us against the world" anger to wake up. Maybe you can't blame them for being tired, last week was a long one and with the season winding down and heading towards the playoffs, it might be a lot to expect them to have much left in the tank this weekend.

The Phantoms looked good in the first part of the opening frame. They jumped out to an early lead on the powerplay with their first shot of the game. Ben Schoen would grab the puck after it was tipped off the stick of Brett Murray along the boards and cut through the faceoff circle into the slot where he ripped a shot that beat Stampede Netminder Alec Calvaruso at 3:58. Seeing Brett Murray hug Schoen for the goal celebration is a funny sight with the size difference.

The Phantoms would carry the play through much of the period but did not muster much in shots on goal. The Stampede would eventually grab some momentum and answered back late. A failed clearing attempt by Steve Holtz would end up on the stick of Jared Wescott at the blueline. Wescott would pass it to Cade Borchardt on the goal line near the boards and go to the front of the net to recieve the pass back from Borchardt for a defletiion that beat Chad Veltri at 17:13. Shots were 13-3 for the Stampede in the period.

The Phantoms celebrate Trevor Kuntar's game winning goal with 1.5 seconds left on the clock.Just In Time! - The Phantoms celebrate Trevor Kuntar's game winning goal with 1.5 seconds left on the clock.

Okay, this was a weird game.

I have to start the recap by mentioning what you probably already have heard. The Phantoms were involved in a scuffle with the NTDP U18s on Saturday night as the final buzzer sounded that resulted in several players on both sides, as well as the NTDP Head Coach, John Wroblewski, getting suspended. Analyzing that mess, I will save for another day.

The result was yesterday morning it was announced that due to a "scheduling conflict" the U18s were not making the trip to Youngstown but instead sending the U17s.

The behind the scenes report is that due to the fight, they were not "dressing any draft eligible players" except Danny Weight and instead calling up the U17 players. That came straight from an alert from the NHL's Central Scouting Service.

As pointed out by Ryan Hardy, the GM of the Chicago Steel, this was not a true call up situation since they sent the full U17 coaching staff. So we got the U17s, possibly a break for the Phantoms, but still an awkward situation at best for the team, league and USA Hockey. For their part, the Phantoms would be without the services of Tristian Amonte, Josh DeLuca, and Christian Stoever. To fill in we dressed and played affiliate forward Garrett Steele, and affiliate netminder Collin Purcell backed up Chad Veltri.