The North Iowa Bulls face an uphill fight if they want to add a fourth Silver Cup banner to the rafters of the North Iowa Events Center.
North Iowa opened Silver Cup tournament play with a 4-2 loss to the Yellowstone Quake Wednesday night in Romeoville, Illinois.
The Quake snapped a 2-2 deadlock with a pair of third-period goals, led by Pablo Pantoja's go-ahead score with 17 minutes to play in the game. Yellowstone's Tony Dahlberg led all scorers with a pair of goals. Goalie Nick Ottenbacher stopped 31 of 33 shots.
The Quake broke open the scoring 6 minutes into the first period with a goal by Carter Johnson. Brendan Studioso tied the game 1-all with a score 48 seconds into the second period.
The game opened up in the second period. The Bulls took a brief lead on a Connor Clemons goal at 14:36. Yellowstone answered a minute later with a Curt Greenbush goal, setting up the third-period flurry of scoring.
Studioso finished the night with a goal and an assist. North Iowa goalie Drew Scites went the distance, stopping 21 of 25 shots.
North Iowa plays Binghamton, Wednesday's 8-1 winners over Long Beach, Thursday night at 7:30 p.m. Yellowstone plays Long Beach at 7.
The Bulls can advance to the knock-out stage of the tournament, which begins Saturday, by finishing first or second in pool play.