By Gene Coleman, Biloxi Sun Herald
BILOXI -- The Mississippi Surge couldn't overcome their penalties in a high-scoring shootout with the Louisiana IceGators on Sunday and lost 6-5 in overtime.
The Surge had seven penalty kills and gave up two power-play goals in an exciting back-and-forth offensive affair.
In the first period, the Surge escaped an early penalty kill, but just as it ended, the IceGators' Matt Robertson took a rebound and put it past goalie Kiefer Smiley for the 1-0 lead.
The Surge answered quickly and strongly with back-to-back goals. The first came from Jeff Grant at 8:52. The second came 15 seconds later with a score by Kyle VanderMale to take the 2-1 lead. Newcomer Ryan Ramage, formerly of the FHL's Dayton Demonz, assisted on the goal.
With the pressure on the Gators, the Surge didn't let up and Payden Benning had what looked to be another quick goal. Instead, an IceGator illegally stopped the puck in the crease and Benning missed the ensuing penalty shot.
Adam Stuart's goal at 17:53 gave a the Surge a 3-1 lead going into intermission.
Early in the second period, the IceGators' Denny Kearney scored a power-play goal to cut the Surge lead to 3-2.
The Surge pulled away again at 7:03 when Jay Silvia took a pass from Corey Tamblyn and put it in the right side of the net. However, the IceGators narrowed the gap again at 10:30 when Smiley had a blocked shot fall away from him unexpectedly. Shawn McNeil beat a scrambling Smiley to the puck and put it in the net for the IceGators.