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Now that was the response Cody Chupp wanted to see from his Lincoln Stars when Sioux Falls makes a push.

Behind three goals in a 2 minute, 38 second-span during the second period, Lincoln posted a 6-3 win over Sioux Falls on Wednesday in Sioux Falls to even their USHL Clark Cup Western Conference opening-round playoff series at one game apiece.

Chupp said on the postgame radio show it was no secret that Lincoln wasn't at it's best in the series opener, a 5-3 loss. But guys bought in, found their games to start and kept building throughout Wednesday's pivotal second game.

"Knowing the character of the group, the culture of the group, I knew we'd be better tonight," Chupp said.

And it's good momentum to take into the decisive game three, Thursday in Sioux Falls with puck drop at 7 p.m.

"Tomorrow has to be the same, if not a better, approach," Chupp said.

The six-goal output was the first time the Stars hit that mark since the 2009 Clark Cup Playoffs. Lincoln did it twice that year, coincidentally, both against Sioux Falls.

The Stars again got a fast start thanks to a Logan Jenuwine goal, his second of the postseason, for a 1-0 lead just over 8 minutes into the game.

But the Stampede answered with back-to-back goals, the second coming just over a minute into the second period.

Cue the Stars' onslaught. Gustaf Westlund's first goal of the postseason opened the floodgates, as he scored three minutes later to tie the game. Collin Peters netted his first goal of the postseason 44 seconds after that and Josiah Slavin followed with his first goal of the playoffs just less than two minutes later.

After Sioux Falls cut its deficit to 4-3 midway through the second period, Casey Dornbach converted on a power play to give the Stars more ample breathing room.

Lincoln again struggled with the power play, at both ends of the ice. With the man advantage, the Stars were 1-of-6 Wednesday after going 1-for-6 in the series opener. Sioux Falls, on the other hand, was 3-for-6.

But facing a huge Sioux Falls power play midway through the third period, the Stars answered in a big way. Ashton Calder's short-handed goal on a feed from Logan Jenuwine put the Stars back in control with a 6-3 lead. Jenuwine finished with three points on the night, with the goal and two assists.

The Stars' veteran leadership also came up big, with four of the six goals coming from players with at least two years of USHL experience.

"It's a group of guys that have been through it before and understand the situation," Chupp said. "The situation isn't too big for those ... guys."

Lincoln put the pressure on Sioux Falls, outshooting the Stampede 44-30. Derek Schaedig got the start in net and buckled down to not allow a goal over the final 28:27 of the game and finished with 27 saves.

Chupp said it was a difficult decision to go with Schaedig over regular starter Tomas Vomacka, who has 44 starts this season. Schaedig came on in relief in Tuesday's series opener, and that solid performance, along with his every day approach led the start and the performance.

"Derek has done things right and earned the opportunity," Chupp said.


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