A three-minute lapse was all it took.
The Quad-City Mallards gave up three goals in 3 minutes, 4 seconds en route to a 4-3 loss to the Indy Fuel on Saturday at the TaxSlayer Center.
The loss comes after the Mallards snapped a 13-game losing streak Friday night against the Fuel.
"We had a little lapse there for a few minutes and unfortunately that cost us the game, but overall I thought we came out this weekend with a lot more heart and fire than lately," forward Tristan King said. "We just had some breakdowns, it's not something you want to see.
"Unfortunately, it happens sometimes, and it's kind of a chain reaction. If one guy's out of place it throws everything off, and before you know it, there's a couple quick ones in the back of your net."
The dagger came from Matt Rupert, who followed up on a rebound to beat Jake Paterson at the 11-minute, 38-second mark of the second period. Rupert’s goal came after Robin Press and Johnny McInnis each scored prior to put the Fuel up 4-1.
Alex Globke cut the lead to 4-2 with a shorthanded breakaway goal at 2:36 in the third period, and then made things interesting soon after.
Globke cut the lead to 4-3 at 9:20, taking advantage of a friendly bounce. A dump-in attempt bounced around the boards but took a strange bounce right to Globke in the slot and he buried into an open net with Fuel goaltender Etienne Marcoux behind the goal attempting to play the puck.
"Hopefully, we can start getting a couple of those, we need them to start getting back on track," Globke said. "I don't even know if I saw it. I thought the goalie was going to rim it, so I figured I'd just go read the rim. I saw it come across the goal line and just stopped. It happened so fast, and I just made sure to put it in the center of the net."
The Mallards had several power play chances throughout the game, including one in the final minutes but never capitalized, going 0-for-6 on the power play.
"It's just a little tweak here and there. We were in the zone for quite a bit on, I'd say half of the power plays," King said. "We were getting shots, making good passes through the sticks but we just couldn't find a way to put it in. We were working hard and moving the right way but we just didn't get the job done."
The Mallards pulled Paterson in the final minute and Willie Raskob looked to have a shot from the blue line but opted to pass and the Mallards never got a shot on Marcoux in the closing seconds.
"Their goalie played out of his mind, he made some great saves," King said. "He kind of stole it there for them."
Sam Warning started the game Saturday where he left off Friday, scoring the opening goal 3:24 into the game. It's Warning's 16th goal of the season, his third in the last two games.
Indy tied the game with a goal from Jack Burton that ricocheted in off the post past Paterson at 14:08 in the period. Paterson, making his first start since Dec. 17, made 28 saves in the loss. Marcoux made 27 saves for Indy.
"The whole team, if you take out that three-minute lapse, they played a heckuva game," Mallards head coach Phil Axtell said. "They showed a lot of character. They've been through quite a bit of adversity the past 10, 11 days as a team and they showed a lot of guts and character to come out in the third and play our game and make it a game."