November 28, 2015

GAME PREVIEW: Gulls Take on the Ontario Reign for Second Game of Home-and-Home Series at Citizens Business Bank Arena (6:00 p.m.).

The San Diego Gulls and Ontario Reign (AHL affiliate of the Los Angeles Kings) will face each other for the second time this week and second of back-to-back games, tonight. The Gulls are 10-7-0-1 (21 points) after beating the Reign 3-2 last night at Valley View Casino Center.

This will be the third meeting between the Gulls and Reign in the 2015-16 regular season (series is 1-1). San Diego and Ontario met twice in the 2015 preseason, both games finishing in favor of the Gulls.

Last night’s contest opened with a high-energy first period with both teams trading opportunities, but remaining scoreless until 11:57 of the first period. Left wing Nic Kerdiles put the Gulls on the board with his fourth goal of the season, assisted by Shane O’Brien and Chris Mueller.

Kyle Bonis added his firsttally of the season for the Gulls at 4:32 of the second period. Bonis is on a PTO with San Diego from Toledo (ECHL). Ontario’s Michael Mersch kept the Reign in it, cutting the Gulls lead  to one with a power play goal at 7:13 of the middle frame. San Diego was next to take advantage on the power play, scoring just under six minutes later to stretch the lead back to two. Gulls defenseman Shea Theodore notched the goal, his second of the season.

Halfway through the third period, Mersch executed on the power play again, gloving down a shot and turning to the net to score. Down by one, Ontario pulled goalie Peter Budaj with 1:25 remaining after Gulls center Mike Sgarbossa was called for tripping, resulting in a 6-on-4 advantage. The Gulls held strong through the penalty kill and grabbed their tenth victory of the season.

The Gulls and Reign will meet 10 more times this season (including tonight). Five of these contests will be held at Valley View Casino Center and five will take place at Citizens Business Bank Arena in Ontario, CA. The Reign are 11-3-2-0 with 24 points on the season thus far.