PREVIEW: Thunder-Grizzlies

Friday, 01.25.13 / 1:27 PM
By Stockton Thunder Staff

GAME: STOCKTON THUNDER VS. UTAH GRIZZLIES
DATE: Friday, January 25, 2013
TIME: 7:30 p.m.
SITE: Stockton Arena
RADIO: 1280 AM KWSX/StocktonThunder.com (AmericaOne)/92.5 FM (in house feed)
TICKETS: Click here

WATCH: Justin Maylan morning skate interview

NHL AFFILIATES

Stockton Thunder: Edmonton Oilers
Utah Grizzlies: Calgary Flames

HOME GAME PROMOTIONAL NOTES

Tonight’s Promotion: (Mystery player) POSTER GIVEAWAY
(presented by In Shape Health Clubs, University Plaza Hotel and 104.1 THE HAWK)
National Anthem Singer: Connie Rill
Public Address Announcer: DJ Walker
In-Arena Emcees: Alan Sanchez

NEXT HOME GAME

Saturday, Jan. 26 vs. Utah Grizzlies (7:30 p.m.)
TEDDY BEAR TOSS (presented by Dorfman Pacific, KAT Country 103, and News10)

TONIGHT’S MATCHUP

The Stockton Thunder faces the Utah Grizzlies at Stockton Arena to begin a three game series in the Central Valley. The Thunder is 3-2-0 against the Grizzlies this season. The last time the two teams met was in Utah on Jan. 2 in a 2-1 victory at Maverik Center. Utah comes off the All-Star break with a 3-7-0 record in their last ten games and last played on Jan. 21 in a 5-3 loss to Idaho.

2012-13 Head to Head Schedule: (3-1-0)

Mon. Nov. 12 Stockton 9 at Utah 6
Fri. Nov. 16 Utah 2 at Stockton 6
Mon. Dec. 31 Stockton1 at Utah 5
Wed. Jan. 2, 2013 Stockton 2 at Utah 1
Fri. Jan. 25 Utah 7:30 p.m.
Sat. Jan. 26 Utah 7:30 p.m.
Sun. Jan. 27 Utah 4:00 p.m.

NOTE OF THE NIGHT

The Thunder is 12-1-2 when leading after one period this season.

LAST THREE GAMES:

SF 5 – STK 2 (1/20/13): Wrapping up a three-game series with their Northern California rivals, the Stockton Thunder (21-15-4-3, 49 points) were outgunned and outpaced by the San Francisco Bulls (15-20-1-4) in a 5-2 loss in front of 5,838 fans at Stockton Arena. Center Gabriel Levesque (two points) and forward Matt Bergland each found the back of the net for the Thunder.

SF 4 – STK 2 (1/19/13): Kris Belan broke a 2-2 tie with 6:04 left in the third period and Taylor Nelson hung on for 32 saves to help the San Francisco Bulls defeat the Stockton Thunder (21-14-7, 49 points), 4-2 at the Cow Palace on Saturday. Mike Little and Harrison Reed contributed offensively with goals for the Thunder. Goaltender Cody Reichard took the loss with 27 saves.

STK 5 – SF 2 (1/18/13): Yannick Riendeau, Eric Hunter and Matt Reber racked up a combined nine points to lead a relentless Stockton Thunder (21-13-7, 49 points) offense, en route to a 5-2 victory over the San Francisco Bulls before 5,617 fans at Stockton Arena on Friday. The Thunder, who won its second straight game over San Francisco and in the first meeting between the two teams in Stockton, improved to 12-4-2 on home ice. Center Gabriel Levesque chipped in with two assists as well.

UPCOMING MILESTONES

• Ryan Constant is 2 assists away from 100 in his professional career
• Yannick Riendeau is 5 assists away from 100 in his professional career
• Garet Hunt is 3 games away from 300 in his professional career

HOME SWEET HOME

The Thunder has made Stockton Arena ideal for home ice advantage this season with a record of 12-4-2. They are in the midst of playing eight of the nine games at home and will start a season long seven game homestand on Jan. 20. Below is a look at key figures for the Thunder at home this season:

At home this season, the Thunder has:

• A record of 12-5-2
• Totaled nine games of scoring four goals or more
• Outshot the opposition ten times this season
• Posted 12 games of 30 shots on goal or more
• Collected at least one power play goal in eight of the last ten games

THE ALL-STARS ARE ALIGNED

Thunder center Justin Maylan took part in the the ECHL All-Star Game on Jan. 23 at Colorado. Maylan represented Stockton well, chipping in with an assist in the second period to help the ECHL All-Stars cruise to a 7-3 win over the Colorado Eagles. The rookie center earned his first trip as a replacement for Toni Rajala on the squad. Originally, the Thunder had Rajala and defenseman Nathan Deck (replaced with Ontario’s Chris Huxley) selected to the ECHL All-Star Team in early January. Both are continuing to skate in the American Hockey League with Oklahoma City. Deck was named a starter for the game (currently skating in the AHL with Oklahoma City) with 17 points in 19 games. Rajala’s 18 goals were among the ECHL’s top five at the time of his selection.

SAINT GABRIEL

Center Gabriel Levesque closed out the pre-All-Star break schedule on a hot streak, scoring two goals and tallying six points in the last four games for the Thunder. Levesque, who has collected four goals and 15 assists in 38 games in his second year as a pro (all with Stockton), opened the scoring at Colorado on Jan. 12 and buried the Thunder’s final goal against San Francisco last Sunday.

NO LITTLE ACCOMPLISHMENT

Thunder defenseman Mike Little played in his 100th career ECHL game on Dec. 27 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. Little also played in his 100th career Thunder game Jan. 9 at Colorado.

JUSTIN TIME

Center Justin Maylan is tied for third in the ECHL in rookie scoring with 34 points this season in 41 games. He collected 12 points in 16 games during the month of December. Maylan has also posted nine multi point games this season.

ROLLING IN THE (RIEN)DEAU

Forward Yannick Riendeau had 19 points in 16 games during December and has posted 12 multi point games this season. He earned a pair of goals last Saturday at Colorado and had an eight game assist streak at home end on Jan. 4.

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. He followed up with two near misses on monthly awards as well – runner up honors for ECHL Rookie of the Month and ECHL Goaltender of the Month (December) with a 4-1-3 record, 2.19 goals against average and .935 save percentage from Dec. 1-31.

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 287 games played.