Kansas City Mavericks captain Rocco Carzo is eagerly awaiting this weekend’s two home games at Silverstein Eye Centers Arena.
The Mavericks play host to the Utah Grizzlies Friday and Tulsa Oilers on Saturday. Both games start at 7:05 p.m.
Carzo is coming off a hot road trip.
Unfortunately, the same can’t be said for the Mavericks, as the captain scored goals in all three games on the road trip – including the game-winning overtime goal last Saturday in a 5-4 win at Florida, but saw his team leave four points on the road with a loss to Florida and Wednesday night’s 7-5 loss to the Orlando Solar Bears.
Carzo scored a goal in the third straight game of the road trip through Florida, and his team mounted a dramatic three-goal comeback in the third period.
But it still wasn’t enough as the Orlando Solar Bears claimed a 7-5 victory Wednesday night at the Amway Center.
“We went to Florida to get six points, and we only got two,” Carzo said. “We need to get four points at home this weekend.”
With the score tied 5-5, Orlando regained the lead for good on a goal by Rich Boyd with just over four minutes remaining.
“This one is on us – not our goalies, on us,” Carzo said by phone following Wednesday’s loss. “We score five goals. That should be enough goals to win a game, especially on the road. We didn’t play well enough as a team defensively, and there is no excuse for that. It’s on me and the rest of the guys!”
Orlando took the early lead on a goal by Mikhail Shalagin at the 4:53 mark. of the first period.
Kansas City’s Tad Kozun evened the score with a shorthanded goal at 8:16 of the period on assists from Ryan Galt and Zach Osburn.
Orlando regained the lead on a goal by Johno May at 11:40 to take a 2-1 advantage into the second period.
Mavericks goaltender Tyler Parsons, who played the first period, did not return to the ice and was replaced by Nick Schneider, who played the remainder of the game.
Orlando padded its lead to 3-1 at 4:46 of the second period on May’s second goal of the evening.
That’s when Carzo got the visitors back within one goal at 6:44 of the second with a power-play goal. Terrance Amorosa and David Dziurzynski assisted on the goal.
Ivan Kosorenkov put the Solar Bears up by three goals with an unassisted goal 2:37 into the third, and that’s when the Mavericks offense kicked into high gear with three even-strength goals.
Amorosa got the Mavericks back to within two goals at the 5:46 mark. Kozun got the lone assist on the goal.
David Dziurzynski made it 5-4 at 8:49 of the third on assists from Neal Goff and Bryan Lemos.
Osburn then tied it with 8:36 to go in regulation. Lemos and Ryan Van Stralen assisted on the goal.
But the Solar Bears took the lead for good on Boyd’s goal at the 15:20 mark. Boyd then added an empty-netter with 1:20 left to account for the final score.
“There is no tomorrow, there is no next week, there is only now,” Carzo said after the Mavericks dropped to 11-13-2-0 and remained in sixth place in the ECHL’s Mountain Division, two spots out of the final playoff berth. “We scored two points down here and we should have scored six. We need to get scoring points to get in the playoff hunt.”