Barracuda's Late-Game Heroics Lead to Shootout Victory
San Jose, CA - The San Jose Barracuda (31-18-2-4) entered Sunday's matchup at the SAP Center against the Stockton Heat (25-26-4-2) (Calgary Flames) looking to end a four-game skid and after reeling off three unanswered goals in the third period to erase a 4-1 deficit, the Barracuda claimed the 5-4 victory in a shootout. Sunday's win was San Jose's 10th in 12 games against Stockton.
At the 6:11 mark of the first period, Stockton would open up the scoring by tallying their eighth shorthanded goal in as many games. An offensive zone giveaway by San Jose allowed for a two-on-one to develop the other way and Ryan Lomberg tossed a pass across to Dillon Dube (13) who fired in a one-timer past Antoine Bibeau. With just under 11 minutes remaining in the first, Stockton would extend its advantage, as Dube (15) would light the lamp again. This time the rookie forward drove hard to the net from the right half-boards and snuck a wrist shot past Bibeau on the short side to make it 2-0.
In the second, San Jose trimmed the Heat lead to one at the 2:47 mark as Francis Perron (16) tipped in a broken-stick point shot by Kyle Wood, but Spencer Foo (15) would answer as he redirected a Dube slap shot past Bibeau on the power-play at 8:36. The Heat lead ballooned to 4-1 at the 17:47 mark when the line responsible for all three heat goals cashed in again. Dube started the offensive zone cycle and sent it behind the net to Foo who crossed a perfect pass from behind the net to Tyler Graovac (23) who lifted the pass short-side under the bar from close range.
Down by three in the third, San Jose began its comeback at 10:11 when Evan Weinger (9) cleaned up a loose puck in the crease after tipping a Matt Fonteyne shot off the post. Then, with Bibeau on the bench for the extra attacker, the Barracuda trimmed the lead to 4-3 with a minute and 27 seconds remaining as Alex True (21) snapped a wrist shot from the top of the right circle that beat a screened Gilles. After Stockton was called for a cross-checking penalty, T.J. Hensick (3) would then rocket a shot in from the left wing at 1:05 to tie the game at 4-4.
The Barracuda were forced in overtime to kill off a minute and 58 seconds of Heat power-play time but weathered the pressure and forced a shootout.
In the shootout, Bibeau stopped all three Stockton shooters and Perron scored in the bottom of the second as San Jose completed the comeback, 5-4.
In the win, Bibeau (12-10-5-0) made sixteen saves on 20 shots and snapped his five-game winless drought, while Gillies (13-15-4-1) stopped 31 shots while allowing four goals in the shootout loss.
The Barracuda will be back in action at SAP Center on Saturday, March 16th when they welcome the Colorado Eagles (Colorado Avalanche) for a two-game series over the weekend. Puck drop is scheduled for 1:15 PM and you can follow along live on 1220 KDOW, The Sharks + SAP Center App, or at watchtheahl.com.
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