Gulls Sham-Rock Silver Knights For Fourth Straight WinMar 11, 2023
By AJ Manderichio/SanDiegoGulls.com
Toss out your lucky four-leaf clover – these San Diego Gulls don’t need any luck.
The Gulls extended their win streak to a season-high four games with a 4-2 win over the Henderson Silver Knights on the team’s St. Patrick’s Day game tonight at Pechanga Arena San Diego. Chase De Leo and Nikolas Brouillard led the charge with 0-2=2 points and Gage Alexander turned in another stellar performance, stopping 35-of-37 shots.
Alexander made a statement early, turning aside a Henderson breakaway chance seconds after the opening faceoff.
A quick pass from the Silver Knights zone sprung Gage Quinney, who split two Gulls defensemen and moved in alone on Alexander. He tested the San Diego netminder on the glove side but found no luck, watching as the rookie confidently stopped the bid and held for the faceoff.
Andrej Sustr opened the scoring, tallying his first in a San Diego sweater at 3:31 of the period.
De Leo took the puck from the corner of the offensive zone, sending a pass to an open Brouillard. The defenseman fired a one-timer on net, forcing Henderson netminder Isaiah Saville to punch the puck into the slot. Sustr collected it from there, navigating through traffic and sending a backhand into the top of the net.
The defensemen is in his second tour of duty with San Diego after joining the organization on Mar. 3. In 41 games with the Gulls, the Plzen, Czechia native has 1-4=5 points.
Henderson galloped ahead in the middle frame on goals from Quinney and Lukas Cormier (PPG). The Quinney tally snapped Alexander’s shutout streak at 108:56.
Chase Priskie continued his strong run in a Gulls sweater, tying the game at 2:18 of the period.
With the teams skating 4-on-4, Brouillard held the puck in his own end, finding De Leo near the benches as the Gulls worked up the ice. The captain held at the blue line before spotting Priskie, who dashed down the wing and collected the puck in stride. His hard wrist shot beat Saville over the shoulder, giving the defenseman four goals in three games with San Diego.
Acquired from the Buffalo Sabres organization on Mar. 3, Priskie’s four goals with the Gulls match the four he recorded in 42 games earlier this season with the Rochester Americans.
Justin Kirkland put the Gulls ahead, finding the back of the net with a backhand shot early in the third period.
As time wound down on a power play chance, Benoit-Olivier Groulx crashed down the boards, protecting a bouncing puck to keep possession in the offensive zone. Kirkland curled away from the boards, dekeing through the middle and lifting a backhand through traffic to beat Saville for his seventh goal of the season.
Alexander stood tall once again, turning aside Gemel Smith twice to preserve the lead halfway through the period. The Henderson forward burst in alone, sending a low shot toward the net. San Diego’s goaltender kicked away the initial attempt and stayed with Smith, who tried to tap the fluttering puck into the net. The team held strong from there, icing the game on a Josiah Slavin empty-net goal to sweep the weekend series.