Traverse City Record-Eagle

North Stars

January 9, 2011

Stars hang 9 goals on Hitmen again

Ainsworth and Szmatula each score two in win

TRAVERSE CITY — For the second time in as many nights, the Chicago Hitmen got in the first shot.

And Traverse City took it, and then scored most of the rest of the game's goals to win 9-6 Saturday.

A day after a 9-1 shellacking of the Hitmen, the North Stars faced a 2-0 first-period deficit and then hung nine goals on Chicago for the second straight game.

A Kelin Ainsworth goal cut Chicago's lead to 2-1 after one period of play. Chris Leibinger and Tim Opie picked up assists.

TC erupted for five goals in the second period — by Ryan Amin, Alec Shields, Sean Murphy and two from Michael Szmatula — to lead 6-5 heading into the third.

Opie, Ainsworth and Jared VanWormer tacked on third-period scores for a 9-6 victory.

Murphy ended with four points, assisting a trio of goals, while VanWormer and Opie each had three-point nights. Defensemen Travis White and Curtis Heinz each had two assists.

Tyler Marble earned the win in relief of Zach Cizek. Marble made five saves on seven shots, while Cizek stopped 14 Hitmen opportunities.

Reid Mimmack had 28 saves for Chicago, giving up eight goals. Down 8-6, the Hitmen pulled Mimmack and gave up a VanWormer empty-net goal.

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