RECAP: Chris Control

Wednesday, 04.04.12 / 11:24 PM
By Stockton Thunder Staff

FINAL STATS: Box score
AUDIO: Game Highlights – Thunder Replay
VIDEO: Highlights and postgame dressing room reaction

D’Alvise completes heroic rally, sends Colorado to brink of elimination

STOCKTON, Calif. – Chris D’Alvise completed a come from behind rally for the Stockton Thunder with a game winning goal just 17 seconds into sudden death overtime in a 3-2 victory over the Colorado Eagles in Game 2 of the Western Conference Quarterfinal at Stockton Arena on Wednesday.

Max Campbell earned a three point outing in only his second postseason game. (photo by Sean Blair)

The Thunder, who rallied from a 2-0 deficit in the first two minutes of the game, pushed the Eagles to the brink of elimination with a 2-0 lead in the best of five series and tied the game with under four minutes remaining in regulation on Max Campbell’s second of two goals.

The Thunder improved to 6-5 lifetime in sudden death overtime in the playoffs and can eliminate the Eagles with a win Friday in Game 3 at Colorado.

“For us, from a confidence standpoint, we needed to know we can come back,” said Thunder head coach Matt Thomas. “I think every team that wants to go into a long playoff run needs to experience that, they have to accomplish that and they have to win overtime games. It’s super important if you want to be a team capable of extending your post season.”

Colorado went up 2-0 with two goals in the first 1:50 of the game, beginning with Joey Sides’ first goal just 48 seconds into the game on a wraparound attempt on Roy after the Thunder turned the puck over behind the net.

Just 1:02 later, Teegan Moore converted on a 2-on-1 break with a wrist shot at the left circle to put the Eagles up 2-0.

After finding balance in the first period and trailing 8-5 in shots category, the Thunder got back into the game with Campbell’s first goal of the postseason, converting a redirection set up by Matt Foy at the 8:06 mark of the second period for a 2-1 deficit.

The Thunder earned the lead in shots at 12-10 in the period and held the Eagles at bay by killing off a penalty with 2:25 left.

With the Thunder gunning for the game tying goal, they threw several chances at the Colorado net in the third period. Campbell finally broke through with 3:24 to play, ripping a one timer past Jones on a set up by Tony DeHart to tie the game at 2-2.

Stockton outshot Colorado, 17-4 in the third period.

The Thunder then made their move off the opening faceoff for overtime. Campbell took a relay pass into the offensive zone and found an open Kevin Baker behind the net. Baker’s centering pass found D’Alvise on a tape to tape feed at the goal mouth, who re-directed the game winning bid past Jones to send Stockton Arena into a frenzy and entire Thunder team flying off the bench to swarm D’Alvise. .

“Our confidence is where it needs to be,” said Thomas. “The first one is the hardest one to get. I said that last night. I think this one was harder and I can guarantee that the next one will is going to be even harder. That’s the way she goes. They all become the biggest game of the year.”

Stockton won its fifth straight overtime playoff game – all under Thomas.

Jones took the loss with 32 saves.

NOTES: Scratched for the game were Matt Reber (healthy) and Brock Matheson (healthy) … the Thunder outshot Colorado, 35-22 and had an advantage at 29-14 in the second and third periods … the last time Stockton went up 2-0 in a series was the 2010 National Conference Semifinal, won by the Thunder, 4-1 in a best of seven series – Stockton also won Game 2 in overtime … Thunder owner Brad Rowbotham was in attendance at the game.

Game 3 of the Western Conference Quarterfinal will be on Friday, when the Thunder visits Colorado at 6:05 p.m. Radio coverage for the game will be available at 1360 KFIV and online coverage is available for viewing (pay-per-view video charge) and listening (free of charge) at www.StocktonThunder.com, courtesy of AmericaOne.

A two-time recipient of the ECHL “Award of Excellence,” Thunder was voted “Best Local Sports Team” by readers of the San Joaquin Magazine, led the ECHL in attendance for four consecutive seasons and drew over 200,000 fans for the sixth consecutive season in 2010-11. Season Tickets for 2012-13 are on sale now. For more information about tickets, merchandise, or other inquiries contact the Stockton Thunder offices at (209) 373-1500 or visit http://www.stocktonthunder.com/.

THREE STARS
1. STK – 9 Max Campbell
2. STK – 10 Chris D’Alvise
3. COL – 19 Joey Sides