Shootout win lifts Ducks over Generals, 5-4

EUGENE — It took a shootout and a hat trick to decide Saturday’s game, but ultimately the visiting Oregon Ducks outlasted the Eugene Generals by a score of 5-4.

It was once again the Ducks who opened the scoring. At 9:58 of the first period, Kiernan Gillooley got the game going with an assist from Trevor Shott. Just 38 seconds later, however, Eugene’s Nathan Leach caught a pass up center and snapped a shot from the point that found its way past Ducks goaltender Ben Green, sending the teams into the locker rooms tied at 1-1.

The Ducks were held scoreless in the middle frame and surrendered two power play goals. With Dominik Estrada in the box for high-sticking, Nash Berkowitz fed a pass to William Wallace at the left hash marks who buried it behind Green for the go-ahead goal. Berkowitz and Wallace got on the scoresheet again at 16:46 as they assisted on an Alex Clark goal that doubled the Generals’ advantage to 3-1.

Spurred by Friday night’s loss, Oregon surged back with three goals in the third period to tie up the game. Nathan Lutz scored his second goal in as many nights, capitalizing on a two-on-one down the center at 10:45 from Shott and Gillooley. Eugene would score again at 16:36 down in front from Sebastian Llaneras, but thanks to two more goals by Gillooley, it would not be enough. Lutz assisted on the first at 17:25, and Gillooley completed the hat trick unassisted just over a minute later after several initial stops by Generals’ goaltender Sean Leonard.

Both netminders were perfect through the overtime period, and so it was on to a best-of-five shootout. Gillooley and Warren Berg both scored for the Ducks while only Dakota Henn scored for the Generals, earning the guests the game and a split exhibition series.

Green stopped 30 of 34 shots in the win, while Leonard turned aside 45 of 50.

The Ducks head out on their California swing starting October 12 where they will face USC and UCLA, then are back at home on October 20 at 7:00 p.m. for a two-game series against Cal Berkeley.