Feb. 7, 2017
BAKERSFIELD, Calif. – The San Diego Gulls (24-12-2-2, 52 pts.) won their sixth consecutive game and extended their standings point streak to a club record 12 games (11-0-0-1, 23 of a possible 24 points), the longest current streak in the AHL this season, in a 4-2 victory over the Bakersfield Condors (19-17-4-1; 43 pts.) at Rabobank Arena on Tuesday night. San Diego has also won five consecutive road games and extended a club record with standings points in 10 consecutive road contests dating back to Dec. 29 at Texas (9-0-0-1, 19 of a possible 20 points).
The win extended San Diego’s unbeaten run to 12 games (11-0-0-1), surpassing the club’s previous record 11-game point streak from Feb. 19 to Mar. 16, 2016 (9-0-1-1). The Gulls have the AHL’s longest point streak in the AHL since Providence earned points in 13 consecutive games from Nov. 18 to Dec. 16, 2016. The Gulls have also won 13 of the last 15 games (13-1-0-1), and have earned standings points in 16 of the past 17 games (13-1-1-2) and 25 of the last 32 overall (22-7-1-2).
Antoine Laganiere (2-1=3) led the way offensively for San Diego as he recorded his second consecutive multi-goal game and first three-point game of the campaign and first since Mar. 27, 2016 vs. SJ (also 2-1=3). On the other side of the ice goaltender Jhonas Enroth (9-1-0) made 18 saves in his eighth consecutive victory since being acquired by the Anaheim Ducks from the Toronto Maple Leafs. Enroth has earned an 8-0-0 record with the Gulls, posting a 1.12 goals-against average (GAA) and .956 save percentage (SV%).
San Diego opened the scoring on the power play at 11:53 of the first period when Laganiere finished off a tic-tac-toe passing play started by Kalle Kossila and Corey Tropp to beat Condors goaltender Nick Ellis. Laganiere has collected 8-3=11 points in his last nine games and leads San Diego with 14 goals on the season.
Bakersfield forward Iiro Pakarinen went to the box 19 seconds after Laganiere’s goal and San Diego found themselves on the man advantage for the second time in the period. The first power-play unit struck once again as Kalle Kossila’s snipe from above the right circle beat a screened Ellis to put the Gulls up 2-0 at 12:37 of the first period.
San Diego also played a stingy frame on the defensive side of the puck, surrendering a season-low two shots to the Condors in the first period.
Only 1:12 into the middle frame rookie Jesse Puljujarvi (1-1=2) cut the Gulls lead in half with a breakaway goal as Nic Kerdiles’ centering pass hopped over the stick of defenseman Keaton Thompson and sprung Puljujarvi who lifted a backhand over Enroth’s blocker.
At 4:28 of the second period just after a power play had expired, Laganiere high tip of Andy Welinski’s point shot deflected off a Bakersfield defenseman past Ellis to extend San Diego’s lead to 3-1.
Early in the third period San Diego ran into penalty trouble when Thompson took a double-minor for high-sticking. Thompson’s penalty came at an inopportune time as Tyler Morley was currently in the box serving a tripping minor. Thanks to some aggressive penalty killing and solid goaltending from Enroth, the Gulls survived almost six straight minutes on the penalty kill.
At 16:27 of the final frame the Condors cut San Diego’s lead to 3-2 on the power play when Anton Lander finished off a feed from Puljujarvi to threaten the Gulls’ point streak. Ryan Garbutt iced the game a few minutes later with an empty-net goal from over 100 feet as the Gulls improved to 3-0-0-0 against Bakersfield this season.
San Diego continues their three-game road trip tomorrow night as they visit San Jose Barracuda at SAP Center (7 p.m.). The Gulls return home on Sunday, Feb. 12 to take on the Bakersfield Condors, (5 p.m.) at Valley View Casino Center. The game will be televised by FOX 5 San Diego throughout San Diego. Fans can purchase tickets by visiting AXS.com/Gulls or by phone at (619) 359-4730.
NOTES: San Diego leads the Pacific Division with 12 road wins (12-6-1-1) and improved to 8-4-1-1 in the first game of back-to-backs…Corey Tropp recorded his team-leading 25th assist and has 4-7=11 points in his last eight games…Kalle Kossila (1-1=2) registered his ninth multi-point game of the season and has 3-7=10 points over the last eight games…Nine different Gulls recorded a point tonight as Andy Welinski, Jeff Schultz, Kevin Roy, Nick Sorensen and Jaycob Megna also tallied assists…Bakersfield netminder Nick Ellis (7-8-2) stopped 32-of-35 shots in his tenth loss.
1. Antoine Laganiere (SD)
2. Kalle Kossila (SD)
3. Jesse Puljujarvi (BAK)