Comeback Falls Short in OT Loss at Idaho
Boise, ID - Wichita fought back from a one-goal deficit to force overtime, but fell on Friday night to Idaho by the final of 2-1 at CenturyLink Arena.
Ostap Safin tied the game with just over six minutes remaining during a net-mouth scramble for his first goal of the season. Mitch Gillam was outstanding in the losing effort, making 39 saves.
Idaho tilted the ice for the first portion of the opening frame and led 17-8 in the shot department. Wichita had a few good chances that were stopped by Tomas Sholl. Will Merchant broke the scoreless tie at 15:49 as he one-timed a seam pass over Mitch Gillam to make it 1-0.
The second was a pretty evenly played period with both teams being held at bay offensively. Idaho outshot the Thunder 10-9 in the frame and held onto a 1-0 lead after two periods.
Safin tied the contest at 13:26 when Stefan Fournier's wrap around attempt went off of Sholl and he jammed it in the net to make it 1-1. For the second time this season, the Thunder would head to overtime.
Wichita had a great chance during the extra period when Fabrizio Ricci stepped up the right wing on a breakaway. He was caught from behind on what appeared to be an infraction, but no call was made. Saucerman scored the game-winner at 4:09 for his first of the season. He curled up near the slot, came down the right seam and found his own rebound to end the game.
Safin netted his first goal in a Thunder uniform and second as a pro. Fournier collects his first assist of the season while Riley Weselowski also had an assist.
The two teams will face-off once again tomorrow night at CenturyLink Arena starting at 8:10 p.m. CST.
The Thunder are excited to be the host of the 2020 Warrior Hockey/ECHL All-Star Classic, presented by Toyota, on Wednesday January 22nd, 2020. Get your tickets now for the league's annual showcase that features some of the best young talent across the ECHL.
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