Final: Gulls 4, Eagles 3

Gulls Down Eagles 4-3 in Front of Sellout Crowd

Nov 9, 2018

Chase De Leo scocred the game-winning goal with 5:38 remaining to give the Gulls a 4-3 win over the Colorado Eagles in front of a sellout crowd at Valley View Casino Center.

"I just tried to just get it in the net. I’m happy it went in and happy it helped the team get the win," said De Leo. "The growth of California hockey and the fan support is unbelievable. You saw that firsthand tonight. It’s fun to be a part of. Anytime the building is that loud it definitely helps, believe it or not. It definitely made a difference tonight."

Sam Carrick and De Leo each netted two points with a goal and assist apiece, and Kevin Boyle backstopped the Gulls with 26 saves en route to his second win of the season. 

Colorado struck first as a heavy slap shot from Mason Geertsen on the blue line beat San Diego netminder Kevin Boyle and found the back of the net 15:24 into the period. The goal marked Geertsen’s first of the season and was assisted by Andrew Agozzino, the Eagles point and assist leader coming into tonight’s matchup.

At the end of the first period, the scoreboard read 1-0 in favor of Colorado. However, the period saw a combined 25 shots, Kevin Boyle denied Ty Lewis on a breakaway with 3:24 left in the period.

The Gulls turned things around in the second frame as Ben Thomson deflected a shot by Simon Benoit into the net 5:07 into the period. Thomson has recorded a goal in three of the previous four home games, while Benoit was awarded the lone assist for his fourth helper of the season.

Less than a minute following Thomson’s tying score, Colorado put a puck past Boyle for what seemed to be a goal. However, the puck was deemed by the refrerees to have been deflected by a stick above the crossbar and was disallowed, keeping the score even at one each.

At 8:26 into the period, De Leo poked the puck to a wide open Carrick in front of the net. Carrick, San Diego’s leading goal-scorer, added his sixth of the season to give the Gulls their first lead of the game. Carrick would add an assist on the game-winning goal and no co-leads San Diego in points (6-5=11). 

"He brings experience. He knows the drill and he’s come down with a passion," said head coach Dallas Eakins on Carrick. "Seeing him come in after being sent down, sometimes guys come in and they’re going through an adjustment. I thought he was one of the best players on the ice tonight....He put it behind him and I just thought he was a force on the ice tonight."

The Eagles tied the game back up at the 15:48 mark of the period as Josh Dickinson stole the puck from behind San Diego’s net and scored a short-handed goal. The goal marked the first short-handed goal that San Diego has allowed this season and the first of Dickinson’s career.

Troy Terry continued the amazing start to his AHL career, netting a goal from a rebound 6:37 into the third and final period. The goal extended his club record point streak to begin an AHL career to seven games (4-6=10). Terry's seven-game point streak is the longest point streak by an AHL rookie this season.

Kalle Kossila tallied the primary assist on Terry's goal, his fifth point in as many games this season (3-2=5). Jaycob Megna also earned an assist on Terry's goal, his second in as many games (0-2=2).

Colorado’s Michael Joly evened the game back up on the power play, sneaking one past Boyle on a rebound opportunity at the 10:21 mark of the period. Prior to the power play goal, ending San Diego’s streak of 12 successful penalty kills in a row.

With 5:38 remaining in the game, De Leo and Carrick connected for the eventual game-winning goal, set up by a booming hit from Corey Tropp to get the puck to Carrick who would dish it to De Leo for his third multi-point performance this season.

"This year isn’t going to be any different, there’s going to be a lot of one-goal games," added Eakins. "We have to find a level of comfort with that when the game is tied, we’re down by a goal or maybe we’re up one. It’s a good experience to be in."

"That was a fast paced game, about as quick as we’ve seen this year. It was an electric crowd. I really thought our crowd had a real positive effect on our team tonight."

The Gulls outshot the opposing team 38-29 as well as in each of the three periods for the second time this season and first since October 12. This was largely due to their balanced attack as 16 of their 18 skaters registered at least one shot.

The Gulls will continue the season-long homestand and conclude a back-to-back matchup against the Colorado Eagles tomorrow night at Valley View Casino Center (7 p.m.).

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