RECAP: Thunder Topples Condors
Former Condor Weller gets on the board; Roy makes 38 saves in 4-1 win
BAKERSFIELD, Calif. –
BAKERSFIELD, Calif. –Goaltender Olivier Roy made 38 saves and the Stockton Thunder (28-21-9, 65 points) never trailed, using three unanswered goals to sink the Bakersfield Condors in a 4-1 victory before 8,023 fans at Rabobank Arena on Thursday.
The Thunder knocked its magic number down to four points to clinch a tie for a Kelly Cup Playoff berth and beat the Condors for the fourth and final time this season in Bakersfield.
Former Condor Shawn Weller got the Thunder on the board with his first goal in a Stockton uniform. With 3:47 left in the first period while on a power play, he set a screen in front of Condors goaltender Brian Stewart and deflected Eric Hunter’s wrist shot to the back of the net.
Roy made 12 saves in the first period, including an early save on Condors leading scorer Francis Verreault’s one timer at the right circle.
A pair of back to back goals in the second period extended the Thunder lead to 3-0, beginning on Matt Bergland’s ninth goal of the season when he buried a rebound off the rush with 7:05 elapsed.
Tony DeHart then rifled a power play goal to the back of the net just 1:20 later from the left circle for a 3-0 Thunder edge. Following a face-off win, Eric Hunter’s shot was blocked from the right circle but DeHart buried the rebound.
Bakersfield then cut the Thunder lead to 3-1 on Evan Trupp’s power play goal with 9:22 left, converting a post-to-post feed by Francis Verreault at Roy’s glove side.
Matt Reber put the game out of reach with his eighth goal of the season with 5:29 left in regulation, putting a backhander past Stewart to chase him from the net in place of backup Scott Greenham.
Stewart made 21 saves and took the loss.
NOTES: The Thunder scratched Jesse Fratkin, Teigan Zahn, Cameron Abney and Justin Maylan … tonight’s game was the final of the regular season between both teams in Bakersfield … the Thunder went 2-of-4 on the power play and broke the Condors season high four game winning streak … the Thunder is now 7-2-1 this season against Bakersfield.
The Thunder returns to play tomorrow at 7:00 p.m. (1280 AM KWSX/StocktonThunder.com), visiting the Ontario Reign at Citizens Business Bank Arena.
A two time recipient of the ECHL “Award of Excellence,” the Thunder led the ECHL in attendance for four consecutive seasons and drew over 200,000 fans for the seventh consecutive season in 2011-12. Season Tickets, Group Tickets and Mini-Plans are on sale now. For more information about tickets, merchandise, or other inquiries contact the Stockton Thunder offices at (209) 373-1500 or visit www.StocktonThunder.com
1. STK – O. Roy
2. BAK – E. Trupp
3. STK – T. DeHart