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By Madison Capitols, 05/10/22, 11:15PM CDT


The Madison Capitols have forced a decisive Game 5 in the Eastern Conference Final after downing the Muskegon Lumberjacks tonight, 3-1 at Bob Suter's Capitol Ice Arena.

In a must win game, the Caps rattled off three consecutive goals in the 2nd period to take a 3-0 lead over the Lumberjacks. Just 31 seconds into the 2nd frame, Nick DeSantis finished a gorgeous spin-o-rama pass from forward Quinn Finley in the slot. 4:54 later, blueliner Ben Dexheimer absolutely uncorked a dead puck slap shot from the high slot to extend the Capitols lead to 2-0. With 1:36 remaining in the middle frame, the Capitols completed a perfect 200-foot sequence that started behind the Madison net. Ben Dexheimer sent a long two-line pass up to Quinn Finley who one-touched it to a breaking DeSantis. DeSantis flew into the offensive zone with speed, got around one defender and fed a perfect centering pass to Finley in the slot who buried his 3rd goal of the playoffs.

"I thought we played with passion and I thought we played hard with compete," Capitols bench boss Tommy Upton said. "Those things are all part of our identity and it's something that we need to do on a nightly basis here to continue to do the things that we would like to do this season."

Madison outshot the Lumberjacks 37-23 in the contest including the 3rd period where they peppered Muskegon's net 19 times to their seven.

Madison and Muskegon will battle it out in Game 5 of the Eastern Conference Final on Thursday night in Muskegon with the winner advancing to the 2022 Clark Cup final.