Gurson’s Late Goal Gives Rampage 6-5 Road Win in Syracuse

by Sydney Nusinov

SYRACUSE, NY – December 2, 2016 – The Cedar Rapids Rampage are fit to be tied. In a game where they trailed four times and were tied five times, Gordy Gurson scored four goals to give Cedar Rapids a 6-5 road win in Syracuse Friday night at the War Memorial Arena at The Oncenter.

The Rampage struggled all game to maintain possession of the ball in their own end.  Jonathan Greenfield’s turnover led to the only goal of the first quarter. Antonio Manfut put the ball away while the Rampage were still trying to regain their shape.

Things turned around in the second quarter.  Jonatan Santos led a breakaway and dished the ball to Gurson, November’s MASL Player of the Month, who put it away to tie the game.  Greenfield found Sam Guernsey, who put the Rampage ahead 2-1, but Jerjer Gibson’s header goal was the highlight of the first half, redirecting Slavisa Ubiparipovic’s heavy shot into the net to tie the game at 2-2.  Kenardo Forbes’s rebound goal put Syracuse back up 3-2 going into halftime.

In the third quarter Hewerton’s shot on a restart was aided by a friendly deflection, which knotted the game at 3-3.  Manfut and Gurson traded goals to even it up again at 4-4.  Syracuse ended the quarter with a Joey Tavernese power play goal with just five seconds left for a 5-4 lead going into the final 15 minutes.

Kid Dynamite to the rescue.  Gurson completed a hat trick to tie the game at 1:51 of the fourth quarter.  Syracuse missed a golden opportunity to take the league when Pablo Da Silva was whistled for a blue card with 6:55 remaining.  The Rampage killed the penalty, but Syracuse maintained possession of the ball and Greenfield, Santos and Joshio Sandoval were unable to sub off until the 2:00 mark, extending the advantage to a de facto five minute powerplay opportunity.

The Rampage have been lethal on restarts this year and Santos, Hewerton and Gurson came through again. Santos passed the ball to his left, Hewerton dummied it between his legs and Gurson blasted it past a helpless Andrew Coughlin for the game winning goal at 13:32.  Syracuse went to the sixth attacker for the final 1:28 but could not find the equalizer.

Cedar Rapids improves to 4-2, while Syracuse drops to 1-2.  The Rampage will complete their weekend road trip with a game in Harrisburg Saturday night.