Gulls Set New Goal Record on Home IceNov 13, 2019
Sam Carrick scored three goals, the first home hat trick in Gulls history as the Gulls set a club record with nine goals in a 9-3 win over the San Jose Barracuda at Pechanga Arena. Defenseman Chris Wideman posted a career-tying three assists while 13 Gulls skaters tallied points in the contest, including seven with multi-point efforts. Anthony Stolarz stopped 32 shots en route to his fifth straight win, tying a career high.
San Diego had a another strong special teams effort, scoring two power-play goals on five chances. The Gulls also negated all three of San Jose’s power-play chances and added two shorthanded goals to tie the league lead with five overall. All five of San Diego’s shorthanded goals have come in the last five games.
“I think our structure is a little better than what we started at for the year,” said Head Coach Kevin Dineen. “You play the game the right way and it’s amazing how you create offensive opportunities. We’ve always felt if we play a solid brand of a defensive game that it will help drive our offense. You can talk about that all you want, but when it actually pays off in a game it’s nice to see.”
San Diego was the first to get on the scoresheet with a quick goal 1:12 into the contest. Max Comtois collected the puck along the boards and passed it to Isac Lundestrom who brought it out of the Gulls defensive zone. Justin Kloos received a pass, walked the puck into San Jose’s defensive zone, split two Barracuda defensemen and threw a wrist shot the back of the net for his first goal of the season. With an assist on the play, Comtois posted the first regular season assist of his AHL career.
San Jose bounced back with a quick pair of goals, the first coming with 11:44 left in the first period to tie the game. Dalton Prout won a battle for the puck along the side board, passed the puck off to a cutting Danil Yurtaykin who sent a high wrist shot to the back of the net. Antti Suomela scored the Barracuda’s second goal just 35 seconds later. Following a defensive zone turnover, Suomela found the back of the net from a tough angle to make the score 2-1 in favor of the Barracuda.
The Gulls evened the score with 8:35 left in the first frame when Alex Broadhurst netted his third goal of the season on an odd-man rush. Broadhurst led the charge out of the Gulls’ defensive zone and dropped the puck off to Blake Pietila, who sent a pass back to Broadhurst to set up the breakaway opportunity. He capitalized on the chance by shaking Josef Korenar one way and tucking the puck past the goaltender’s pad and into the net. The goal marked his first even strength goal after his first two goals of the campaign came on the penalty kill.
San Diego jumped back in front when Carrick scored a power-play goal with 7:41 left in the period. Suomela was sent to the penalty box for two minutes on a slashing minor, but the Gulls only needed 18 seconds to cash in on the man-advantage. After winning the faceoff, Carrick passed the puck to Wideman at the blue line who redistributed it to Lundestrom. The defense collapsed to the left side of the ice, allowing Carrick to sneak into an open area on the weak side corralling a pass from Lundestrom and his powerful slap shot beat Korenar from the right faceoff circle.
Lundestrom recorded the primary assist on the score, his second helper of the period to mark his second career AHL multi-point game and his first since his Gulls debut Nov. 16, 2018 against Bakersfield (0-2=2).
Carrick got on the board again with 2:31 left in the period, giving the Gulls a two-goal lead. As San Jose was entering the Gulls zone, Chase De Leo raced down the ice to disrupt the play. De Leo knocked the puck out of John McCarthy’s possession and back down the other side of the ice to Carrick, who received the puck behind two Barracuda defensemen and created a breakaway opportunity. With time and space, Carrick capitalized on the attempt when he wristed the puck top shelf past Korenar for his team-leading sixth goal of the season.
The Gulls led 4-2 on the scoreboard after the first period, but were outshot 14-10 in the frame by the Barracuda. San Diego scored a power-play goal on their two chances of the period and killed their lone penalty.
Suomela scored his second goal of the night, bringing San Jose within one goal with 12:54 remaining in the middle frame. Keaton Middleton sent a shot wide of the net, but Jeffrey Viel managed to poke the puck to the front of the net to Suomela’s stick and he shot a backhander into the net to cut the Gulls lead to 4-3.
With 7:13 remaining in the second period the Gulls received a power play opportunity after the Barracuda’s captain John McCarthy was booked for holding, but Korenar saved San Diego’s one shot on goal. With time on the power play dwindling to a close, the Gulls turned the puck over at the blue line in the San Jose zone as McCarthy jumped out of the penalty box and received the puck to set up a breakaway opportunity. Stolarz stood tall in net, as he stifled the shot by McCarthy to maintain the lead.
The Gulls managed to hold a 4-3 lead into the locker room after the second period, despite being outshot 27-19 through the first 40 minutes.
San Diego received their fifth power-play opportunity of the night early into the third period and the power-play unit cashed in yet again, as Carrick tallied his third goal of the evening to push the lead to 5-3 with 18:17 left in the frame. Wideman passed the puck from the point to Carrick in front of the net, put a shot on net that was saved, but managed to pick up the rebound and put it into the net to complete the hat trick. Carrick’s three-goal performance marked the first home hat trick in Gulls history and the second of his career.
“He’s been great,” said Kloos about team captain Carrick. “Since I got here last year, he’s just lead by example and been a workhorse. When things weren’t going great for us in October, he was really good at staying positive, keeping to the grind and sticking with us. He led the way tonight and he will other nights.”
Alex Dostie netted his fourth goal of the season 40 seconds later. Jack Kopacka gained possession of the puck behind the Barracuda net and passed it to Ryan Johnston at the point, who wristed it into the traffic in front of Korenar’s crease. Dostie controlled the puck and with a quick turnaround move, put the puck to the back of the net for his second multi-point effort in four games (3-2=5).
The Gulls lead extended to 7-3 when Keifer Sherwood scored a breakaway goal with 14:52 left in the third period. Dostie stopped a Barracuda shot from reaching Stolarz and passed the puck up the ice to Sherwood, who had a free lane to the net. He shifted the puck from his forehand to the back side of the stick and lifted the puck over the blocker side of Korenar.
Benoit was sent to the penalty box 6:43 into the final frame, giving San Jose another power-play opportunity. Wideman shut down a zone entry into the San Diego defensive zone and got the puck to Kloos, forcing a shorthanded breakaway attempt. There was a heavy Barracuda presence in the San Diego zone left Kloos open to carry the puck to the front of the net and sent a wrist shot past Korenar’s glove.
The Gulls set the club record with their ninth and final goal of the night with 2:35 remaining in the third period, while on the penalty kill, as De Leo scored San Diego’s second shorthanded goal of the evening. An errant pass by the Barracuda resulted in an odd-man rush for San Diego when Sherwood picked up the puck and skated it through the neutral zone, with Kloos to his right. Sherwood passed it over to Kloos in the slot and lone defenseman Nikolai Knyzhov was unable to intercept the puck, allowing Kloos to tap it in for the Gulls league-leading fifth shorthanded goal.
Chase De Leo also earned a goal and assist (1-1=2), his first multi-point game of 2019-20, while Kloos now has seven points his last five games (2-5=7).
“Our crowd gets behind us and we can feel that energy,” said Carrick. “When we have all four lines rolling like we did tonight, it’s fun. That’s the kind of style we want to play. We want to be a team that can roll line after line and come in waves. We did a good job of that tonight.”
The Gulls travel to Ontario to face off against the Reign on Friday, Nov. 15 at Toyota Center (7 p.m.) in their first game of a home-and-home series.