PREVIEW: Thunder-Utah

Monday, 12.31.12 / 1:21 AM
By Stockton Thunder Staff

GAME: Stockton Thunder at Utah Grizzlies
DATE: Monday, December 31, 2012
TIME: 5:05 p.m.
SITE: Maverik Center
RADIO: 1280 AM KWSX/StocktonThunder.com (AmericaOne)
WATCH PARTY: Fat’s Grill

VIDEO: Morning skate comments – Hunter, Brodie, Maylan

NHL AFFILIATES

Stockton Thunder: Edmonton Oilers
Utah Grizzlies: Calgary Flames

NEXT HOME GAME

Friday, Jan. 4 vs. Alaska Aces (7:30 p.m.)
WALL CLING GIVEAWAY (presented by KAT Country 103)

TONIGHT’S MATCHUP

The Stockton Thunder takes on the Utah Grizzlies at Maverik Center to continue a seven game series between the two teams. The Thunder is 2-0-1 since continuing play from the holiday break and is 2-0-0 against the Grizzlies this season. The last time the two teams met in Utah was on Nov. 12, when the Thunder broke a single game goal scoring record in a 9-6 win. The Grizzlies carry three active players on their roster with NHL experience (Trevor Lewis, Brad Mills and Riley Armstrong). Utah comes off a 6-5 shootout loss against Ontario on Saturday.

NOTE OF THE NIGHT

The Thunder is 10-0-2 when leading after one period this season.

2012-2013 Head to Head Schedule: (2-0-0)

Mon. Nov. 12 Stockton 9 at Utah 6
Fri. Nov. 16 Utah 2 at Stockton 6
Mon. Dec. 31 at Utah 5:05 p.m.
Wed. Jan. 2, 2013 at Utah 6:05 p.m.
Fri. Jan. 25 Utah 7:30 p.m.
Sat. Jan. 26 Utah 7:30 p.m.
Sun. Jan. 27 Utah 4:00 p.m.

LAST THREE GAMES:

LV 3 – STK 2 (OT) (12/29/12): A total of 6,431 fans saw the final Thunder home game of the year at Stockton Arena on Saturday. The 2012 finale saw a back-and-forth battle decided by Adam Hughesman’s goal in overtime, as the Stockton Thunder (17-9-7, 41 points) fell to the Las Vegas Wranglers 3-2. Forwards Yannick Riendeau and Philippe Cornet (first game back from the AHL) each found the back of the net. Goaltender Cody Reichard (7-2-4) recorded 42 saves for the Thunder, while Las Vegas’ Joe Fallon stopped 28 in net. The Thunder only had four defenseman activated for the game.

STK 6 – BAK 3 (12/28/12): Eric Hunter and Justin Maylan each buried two goals while goaltender Tyler Bunz made 21 saves to lift the Stockton Thunder (17-9-6, 40 points) to a 6-3 victory over the Bakersfield Condors at Rabobank Arena on Friday. The Thunder, who led wire to wire in the game and improved to 6-1-1 this season over their division rivals, buried a pair of power play goals and collected multi point games from Teigan Zahn and Yannick Riendeau as well.

STK 4 – BAK 2 (12/27/12): Matt Bergland collected a goal and an assist while goaltender Tyler Bunz made 29 saves to help the Stockton Thunder (16-9-6, 38 points) boom past the Bakersfield Condors in a 4-2 victory before 3,332 fans at Rabobank Arena on Thursday. Four unanswered goals powered the Thunder attack and Bergland was joined by Toni Rajala, Teigan Zahn and Phil Mangan, who each contributed with a goal. Bunz snapped a 0-5-3 streak with the win and made 23 saves in the final 40 minutes.

UPCOMING MILESTONES
• Ryan Constant is 3 assists away from 100 in his professional career
• Yannick Riendeau is 9 assists away from 100 in his professional career
• Mike Little is 5 games away from 100 in his Thunder career

NO LITTLE ACCOMPLISHMENT

Thunder defenseman Mike Little played in his 100th career ECHL game last Thursday at Bakersfield and helped out offensively with an assist in a 4-2 Thunder win. Little was named to the ECHL All-Rookie Team last season and was the first selection in Thunder history.

JUSTIN TIME

Center Justin Maylan is second in ECHL rookie scoring with 29 points this season in 31 games. He has collected nine points in the last 12 games. Maylan has also posted eight multi point games and buried a pair of goals last Friday at Bakersfield.

ROLLING IN THE (RIEN)DEAU

Forward Yannick Riendeau has 19 points in the last 15 games (since Dec. 1) and has posted ten multi point games this season. He earned a goal and an assist on Saturday vs. Las Vegas and is on an eight game assist streak at home.

PLAYING THE REICHARD

Thunder goaltender Cody Reichard became the 11th goaltender in Thunder history to earn the ECHL Goaltender of the Week award when he took the honor on Dec. 11. Reichard posted a record of 2-0-1, a 2.30 goals-against average and a .966 save percentage for the week of Dec. 3-9.

AN OFFENSE DRESSED TO THE NINES

The Thunder tied a club record for most goals in a game (9) on Nov. 12 in a 9-6 victory at Utah, matching the record previously set on Dec. 10, 2011 against Bakersfield. The Thunder also notched a season high for most goals (5) in a period, accomplishing the feat in the second period at Maverik Center on Nov. 12. The Thunder is averaging 3.5 goals per game this season, ranking fifth in the ECHL (as of Sunday). The Thunder has also scored six goals or more in a game seven times this season.

OH CAPTAIN MY CAPTAIN

Garet Hunt was named the sixth captain in Thunder history on Oct. 12, taking the “C” for the first time in his career for full-time duty. Hunt served as an alternate captain for the Thunder last season and has helped guide the team to the playoffs for four straight seasons since his 2008-09 rookie campaign. Hunt is the Thunder all time leader with 276 games played.

Leave a Reply