Friday, September 16, 2016

By Lee Samuels

Las Vegas – When all seemed lost on Friday night UNLV scored two late goals in the third period and in OT a new skater – Dion Antisin, from Kelowna BC – scored the biggest goal of all.

The final score: UNLV 3, San Diego State 2 in overtime before a frenzied hometown crowd at the Las Vegas Ice Center.

For UNLV the Opening Night game was dicey all night long before the Rebels got their mojo going with about 10 minutes to play. SDSU had played brilliantly working to a 2-0 lead and suddenly – without explanation by anyone – the SDSU skaters appeared to be gassed and UNLV took game control, scoring twice at the end of the game to tie 2-2, then Antisin buried his own rebound into the net in overtime.

“We kept telling ourselves between periods we’ve got to play better to win this,” said Antisin who last winter skated for Concordia University. 

“It was Opening Night, maybe it was a case of the nerves early in the game,” said UNLV head coach Anthony Greener. “Then Dion Antisin got the big goal to win it.”

Cody Williams, one of UNLV’s all-time greatest goal scorers, earlier crossed in front of the San Diego State net and scored to make it SDSU 2, UNLV 1 halfway through the third period. Then Connor Hetzel of UNLV blasted a long-range shot to score and make it 2-2. The game went into OT and Antisin won it with a rebound blast from the slot area.

SAN DIEGO STATE…1….1….0….0=2


UNLV scoring

UNLV – Cody Williams (Viktor Brask)

UNLV – Connor Hetzel (Trevor Ruiz)

UNLV – Dion Antisin (Jake Saxe)

UNLV goalie – Terry Martin (1-0-0)

From the Blue Line –  It was stunning to see how well San Diego State played for 2 1/2 periods – then UNLV seized game control and won it….How serious was SDSU’s late-game 2-0 lead? UNLV’s coaches Anthony Greener and Nick Robone didn’t crack a smile on the bench until the game was tied 2-2….#6 Nick Giers had an awesome game defensively for UNLV….Chris Francis, one of Las Vegas all-time goal scorers, was at the rinkboards…Adam Hendren was referee. He worked a great game. …Justin Grossman, who years ago skated for the 2001-02 Las Vegas Mustangs 18u, was a linesman last night….Two very young UNLV fans – Ryan and Leah Zurfluh – watched their first Rebels game from the south rinkboards. Ryan is 7, Leah 4.