Gulls Hook Barracuda, Sink San Jose for Fourth Straight WinNov 10, 2019
The Gulls extended their win streak to four games with a 3-1 victory over the San Jose Barracuda at SAP Center. San Diego improved to 4-0-0-0 in the month of November with their second road win in 2019-20. The Gulls killed all four penalties and has now negated 21 of the opposition’s last 22 power-play chances (95.5%). Gulls newcomer, Ryan Johnston made his debut with the Gulls and recorded a +2 rating and forward Kiefer Sherwood played in his 100th consecutive professional hockey game.
"We're just trying to play the right way, stick to our system here," Sherwood said following the win. "We've proven it to be successful, so just stick to the script, play a full 60 and keep all four lines, I like our odds."
San Diego goaltender Anthony Stolarz picked up his fourth consecutive win after stopping 31-of-32 shots. His four-game win streak marks the second longest of his AHL career and is one win away from matching his career best. Over his four-game win streak, Stolarz has posted a 0.913 save percentage (SV%) and 2.75 goals-against average (GAA).
The Gulls continued the trend of coming out of the gate strong, getting on the scoreboard just 2:19 into the contest. The play started with a blocked shot in the San Diego zone followed by a breakout pass to center ice by Jack Kopacka. Alex Dostie passed the puck to Corey Tropp along the boards and a two-on-one rush turned into a breakaway when Tropp threw it back to Dostie in full stride. Dostie beat San Jose’s netminder Andrew Shortridge for the early lead.
The early score extended the Gulls’ streak of scoring the game’s first goal to four games. All four of those goals have been inside the four-minute mark. The goal also marked Dostie’s third goal and fourth point (3G/1A) over his last four games. With an assist on the play, Kopacka extended his point streak to three games (1-3=4).
Just a couple of minutes later, Alexander True was sent to the penalty box for boarding and San Diego was given their first opportunity on the power play. It was San Jose that had the best chance on the man advantage when Barracuda captain John McCarthy tested Stolarz with a shot on an odd-man rush. Stolarz came away with a big blocker save that kept San Diego ahead in the game.
Sam Carrick extended the Gulls lead to two goals with a score just 58 seconds left in the opening period. The play was reminiscent of Dostie’s opening goal as Tropp threw the puck from the sideboard to a wide-open Carrick in the slot. Carrick got his stick on the puck and redirected it past Shortridge to double San Diego’s lead.
With the score, Carrick now has 3-4=7 points over the previous six games and Tropp has four assists in his last three games. Brendan Guhle also added an assist to extend his point and assist streak to three games (1-3=4). The Gulls led the Barracuda in shots 10-5 after 20 minutes of play and killed the lone power play.
Blake Pietila extended the Gulls lead to 3-0 with the team’s third consecutive goal of the game at the 11:07 mark of the middle period. Alex Broadhurst dished the puck to Justin Kloos as he was entering the San Jose zone and he passed it off to Blake Pietila who wasted no time firing a shot on net. The shot beat Shortridge blocker side, marking Pietila’s second goal of the 2019-20 season.
San Jose put 17 shots on net in the second frame, one of which beat Stolarz with 2:06 remaining in the period for San Jose’s lone goal of the game. Joachim Blichfeld was the recipient of the unassisted goal after a blocked shot led to a breakaway chance. Stolarz stopped the first shot, but Blichfeld capitalized on the rebound with a high wrist shot.
The third period was highlighted by several saves by Stolarz and a late push by San Jose after they pulled Shortridge for the extra attacker. San Diego was unable to score, but had an impressive defensive stand, holding off for their fourth consecutive win.
San Diego will conclude their three-game road trip tomorrow on Monday, Nov. 11 against the Stockton Heat at Stockton Arena (1 p.m.).