6,096 turn out for Dallas Braden appearance, Thunder snap regulation losing skidDecember 31, 2011 - ECHL (ECHL) Stockton Thunder
The Thunder, who welcomed Oakland Athletics pitcher and Stockton native Dallas Braden in attendance for a special appearance, settled for a point to snap a five game losing streak in regulation and posted three unanswered goals by Cameron Abney, Jesse Fratkin and Milan Kytnar. Goaltender Olivier Roy received a shootout loss with 38 saves.
Estrada ended the game in the shootout's sixth round with a wrist shot to Roy's blocker, after Carrozzi stopped a backhanded spin-o-rama move by Ryan Martindale.
"We had a couple of guys who had critical mistakes who put us in a hole in the beginning," said Thunder head coach Matt Thomas. "I liked the way we dug out of it, but overall we didn't get it done. We were hard nosed, played the right way and Olivier made some real quality saves. But give credit to Ontario for the way they played."
Ontario earned its second straight win with just 13 skaters in the lineup.
Both teams combined for four goals in the first 9:05 of the first period for a 2-2 tie. Ontario's two goal run in 1:57 began with Brady Calla's wrist shot from the slot that escaped past Roy and traffic at the net for the game opening goal at 1:57.
Derek Couture, left uncontested at the front of the net, finished a C.J. Stretch centering pass for a 2-0 edge.
The Thunder responded with Abney's second goal of the season at 8:03 to slice the deficit to one goal when he scored off the faceoff at the right circle.
Fratkin leveled the score, 2-2 at 9:05 when he fired a wrist shot past Chris Carrozzi from the left wing on a feed by Jordan Fulton.
The second period featured an array of high quality scoring chances at both ends of the ice. Olivier Roy's best save came on a wrist shot by Vincent LoVerde at the right circle that Roy knocked away with a diving glove stop.
Carrozzi upheld the 2-2 tie with his best save of the period coming on a redirection at the goal mouth by Milan Kytnar.
Kytnar then buried his fourth goal of the season off the rush at the 6:46 mark of the third period, skating behind Jordan Fulton as the trailer at the left wing and blasting a one timer past Carrozzi from the circle.
Ontario had an answer and C.J. Stretch's 14th goal of the season tied the game again, 3-3 on a power play with nine minutes left in regulation.
Both teams carried the tie into overtime and Roy turned away the best chance of the period on Estrada's slapshot from the left circle.
In the shootout, Jordan Foreman and Ontario's Kyle Kraemer exchanged goals in the first round. Kevin Baker put the Thunder ahead with a snap shot past Carrozzi's blocker in the fourth round, but Ontario stayed alive when Huxley put a wrist shot through Roy's five hole in the fifth round.
Estrada followed with the game winner to give Ontario its second win in three days.
NOTES: Scratched for the game were Gabriel Levesque (injured reserve), Cameron Brodie (injured reserve), Jason Morgan (injured reserve), Bretton Cameron (healthy) and Sebastian Owuya (healthy) ... Martindale extended his scoring streak to five consecutive games ... Matt Foy earned the 100th assist in his professional career on Kytnar's goal, extending his scoring streak to 12 points in the last ten games ... Ontario led in shots, 42-39.
The Thunder returns home for its next game tomorrow at Stockton Arena against the Ontario Reign at 7:30 p.m. Radio coverage is available at 1280 AM KWSX and online coverage is available for viewing (pay-per-view video charge) and listening (free of charge) at www.StocktonThunder.com, courtesy of AmericaOne.
A two-time recipient of the ECHL "Award of Excellence," Thunder was voted "Best Local Sports Team" by readers of the San Joaquin Magazine, led the ECHL in attendance for four consecutive seasons and drew over 200,000 fans for the sixth consecutive season in 2010-11. Season Tickets for 2011-12 are on sale now. For more information about tickets, merchandise, or other inquiries contact the Stockton Thunder offices at (209) 373-1500 or visit http://www.stocktonthunder.com/.
1. ONT - 44 Kevin Estrada
2. STK - 19 Milan Kytnar
3. ONT - 10 C.J. Stretch
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