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Thunder Strike in Each Period to Stay Hot

For the third time in four games, the Wichita Thunder and Tulsa Oilers hooked up Friday night at INTRUST Bank Arena

Photo Courtesy: Ed Bailey/Wichita Thunder

Thunder Strike in Each Period to Stay Hot

WICHITA, Kan. – For the third time in four games, the Wichita Thunder and Tulsa Oilers hooked up Friday night at INTRUST Bank Arena. After winning seven of the 11 contests over Wichita last season, the Oilers came into the contest looking for their first win of the season over Wichita, while the Thunder were looking to keep the good times going and extend their point streak to seven games.

Game in a Paragraph

Looking to avenge their overtime loss Wednesday night, the Thunder got off to a good start Friday night. It was a Tim Soderlund goal 1:43 into the contest that sent more than 12-hundred bears of all shapes, colors, and sizes to the ice of INTRUST Bank Arena.

After a six-minute delay to clean the ice, the momentum seemed to switch to the Oilers’ side, as they controlled the action for a majority of the period, thanks to three Wichita penalties, all of which the Thunder killed off. The Oilers’ inability to score on the man-advantage was a huge early boost for the Thunder, who escaped the opening period with a 1-0 lead. About six minutes into the second, Dean Stewart was left all alone in front of the Oilers’ net, where he beat Daniel Mannella and scored his second goal of the year to double the Thunder lead. Toward the end of the period, the Oilers would get into some penalty trouble and on the ensuing power play early in the third period, Matteo Gennaro scored his second power-play goal in as many games against the Oilers to expand the Thunder lead to 3-0. Wichita continued to press for the fourth goal, but the Oilers defense, penalty kill, and goaltending stood tall. The momentum led to the Oilers getting a late goal by Dylan Sadowy with about five minutes left, but the Oilers would get no closer, losing 3-1.

Final Stats

Wichita Standouts:

  • After saying “they know they can do more,” head coach Bruce Ramsay saw his “second line” of Soderlund-Gennaro-Brayden Watts chip in with four points (2G, 2A) and eight shots on net
  • In his return to the lineup after being out for about three-and-a-half weeks, Alex Peters registered an assist and three blocked shots
  • After being on the league’s Commissioner Exempt (COVID) list, Billy Exell returned Friday night. He only recorded one shot on net, but had several key defensive plays
  • Jay Dickman collected an assist on the second goal Friday night and now has a six-game point streak
  • Evan Buitenhuis made his 13th straight start Friday night, putting him two off the team record held by Bobby Desjardins.
    • He started the month with a 3.53 goals against average and an .899 save percentage. Those stats now sit at 2.22 GAA and .932, respectively
    • He has allowed one goal in three of the last five games
  • Ramsay did say during the Field Pass Hockey Pregame Show Friday night that new goaltender Jake Theut will likely see some action at some point this weekend.

Tulsa Standouts:

  • Dylan Sadowy scored his team-leading sixth goal on Friday night
  • Newly signed forward, Darren McCormick, collected an assist in his first game with Tulsa
  • After being on reserve for the first month-plus of the season, Adam Pleskach made his season debut Friday night. He was held off the scoresheet
  • After getting out to a blistering 5-0-0-0 start to his pro career, Oilers netminder Daniel Mannella suffered his first pro loss

Up Next:

Wichita stays home to finish out the weekend and a season-long five-game homestand against the Rapid City Rush tomorrow night and Sunday afternoon. Tulsa returns home to play the Utah Grizzlies tomorrow night and Sunday afternoon.

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    Matthew Harding is the Managing Editor for Field Pass Hockey, covers the ECHL and the Wichita Thunder. Follow and interact with him on Twitter @FPHThunder.

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