Colorado races to six-goal lead, holds off Wranglers’ late surge

The last time the Wranglers played Colorado, on Oct. 28, they beat the Eagles by six goals behind Eric Lampe’s franchise-record four goals and six points.

On Tuesday night, Colorado returned the favor, exploding for five straight goals in the first period and taking a six-goal lead midway through the game before holding off a late charge by Las Vegas in a 6-4 victory at Orleans Arena.

The loss snapped a six-game home winning streak and 11-game home point streak (9-0-2) by the Wranglers (16-8-4), who hadn’t lost at home in regulation since Oct. 27.

“We were too lackadaisical, and we weren’t ready,” said Las Vegas left wing Adam Miller, who scored two second-period goals. “This is a good wake-up call for us. Even though we’re winning, we can’t take it for granted. Every game’s not going to be easy for us.”

Jon Landry opened and closed the first-period scoring for the Eagles (16-8-3), who won their fifth straight game.

He gave Colorado a 1-0 lead at the 1:54 mark, when his shot from the left point fluttered past goaltender Joe Fallon, and made it 5-0 with one second left when he punched a loose puck past goalie Mitch O’Keefe on the power play.

In the interim, the Eagles netted three goals in about three minutes.

Kyle Peto scored a power-play goal on a blast from the high slot at 10:21 to make it 2-0, and Michael Forney scored at 12:30 to chase Fallon, who allowed three goals on eight shots after entering with the ECHL’s fifth-best goals-against average (2.25).

O’Keefe gave up a goal on the first shot he faced, a slap shot from the left point by Jason Beatty that made it 4-0.

“Our goaltending was not good, and I don’t know how many times I’ve ever said that,” Wranglers coach Ryan Mougenel said. “Their goalie was really good early on, and we were brutal in the first period.”

Kyle Jones (13-3-2) made 43 saves for the Eagles as Las Vegas outshot them 21-5 in the second and 34-15 over the final two periods.

The Wranglers didn’t come alive until Colorado increased its lead to 6-0 at 11:34 of the second, when Aaron Schneekloth banked in a shot off the post.

Miller put Las Vegas on the board a few minutes later on a power-play goal from the slot, and he made it 6-2 with 59 seconds remaining in the second period.

Lampe, who was returned from Lake Erie of the American Hockey League, made it 6-3 at 55 seconds of the third when he scored a power-play goal, his league-leading 21st, on a deflection in front of the net.

Mike Madill scored on a shot from the point through traffic at 5:19 to cut the Wranglers’ deficit to 6-4, but Jones stoned Las Vegas the rest of the way.

The Wranglers went 2-for-8 with the man advantage.

Chad Costello had two assists for Colorado to increase his ECHL-leading point total to 44 (15 goals, 29 assists).

Contact reporter Todd Dewey at or 702-383-0354.

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