Michael Russo has covered the National Hockey League since 1995. He has covered the Minnesota Wild for the Star Tribune since 2005, after 10 years of covering the Florida Panthers for the Sun-Sentinel. He uses “Russo’s Rants” to feed a wide-ranging hockey-centric discussion with readers, and can be heard weekly on KFAN (100.3 FM) radio and seen weekly on Fox Sports North.

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Wild claims prospects tourney win over Detroit

Posted by: Michael Russo under Wild training camp Updated: September 11, 2011 - 9:59 PM

After a 6-3 loss Saturday to Buffalo, the Wild beat Detroit 4-2 tonight in the Traverse City Prospects Tournament.

Here's the Wild press release:

As the final minutes ticked off the clock, Kris Foucault netted the game-winning goal to help Minnesota claim a 4-2 victory over Detroit in the Wild’s second contest of the Traverse City Prospects Tournament tonight.
 
Assistant General Manager Brent Flahr said the team’s chemistry improved since yesterday’s loss to Buffalo, as players were able to create good chances and capitalize on them. “They didn’t try to force things offensively,” he said. “They followed the systems and they were rewarded.”
 
Whereas the team struggled to finish a few key plays yesterday, Flahr said today’s forecheck improved with the help of a few line changes. “I think we were a lot more in control and were a little more comfortable together,” he said. 
 
The Wild took the early lead when Foucault scored midway through the first period on a feed from Justin Fontaine and Zack Phillips, putting Minnesota up 1-0. Detroit evened the score 1-1 with under a minute remaining in the second period when Artem Sergeev tallied a point of his own.
 
Not to be deterred, the Wild came out strong in the third period, and Fontaine regained the team’s lead four minutes in with a goal assisted by Foucault. With six minutes remaining in the game, Detroit answered. Xavier Ouellet was able to slip the puck past goaltender Matt Hackett, evening the tally at 2-2.
 
But the game was not headed for overtime. With less than two minutes remaining on the clock, Foucault carried the puck out of the corner and beat the defenseman one-on-one. He rushed the net and buried the puck five-hole, tallying the night’s unassisted game winner.
 
With seven seconds on the clock, Brett Bulmer solidified the Wild’s 4-2 victory with an empty netter assisted by Chay Genoway and David McIntyre.
 
Flahr said that, like yesterday, the team had to kill a lot of penalties. “We can’t keep taking this many penalties, but our kill has done a good job,” he said. Hackett, who turned away a whopping 46 shots on the night, was a central component to the kill all game.
 
The Wild will take the ice Monday for a 1:45 p.m. practice. The team’s third game is set for Tuesday at 5:30 p.m. against Columbus.
 
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