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Game Preview (Game 3): Stockton Thunder (#5) at Colorado Eagles (#4)

April 6, 2012 - ECHL (ECHL) - Stockton Thunder News Release

KELLY CUP PLAYOFFS - WESTERN CONFERENCE QUARTERFINAL (GAME 2)

GAME: Stockton Thunder (#5) vs. Colorado Eagles (#4)

DATE: Friday, April 6, 2012

TIME: 6:05 p.m.

SITE: Budweiser Events Center

RADIO: 1360 AM KFIV/StocktonThunder.com (AmericaOne)

NHL AFFILIATES

Stockton Thunder: Edmonton Oilers, San Jose Sharks

Colorado Eagles: Winnipeg Jets

NEXT HOME GAME

TO BE DETERMINED

TONIGHT'S MATCHUP

The fifth seeded Thunder battles the fourth seeded Colorado Eagles tonight in Game 3 of the Western Conference Quarterfinals at Budweiser Events Center, a best of five series that follows a "2-3" format. The Thunder leads the series, 2-0 and needs one more win to advance to the Conference Semifinals for the third time in the last four seasons. It is the first time that the Thunder is facing Colorado in the Kelly Cup Playoffs. The Thunder finished 4-5-0 this season against Colorado. The Thunder defeated Colorado, 3-2 in overtime at Stockton Arena in Game 2 on Wednesday.

STOCKTON VS. COLORADO - WESTERN CONFERENCE QUARTERFINALS (all times listed PT)

(Stockton leads series, 2-0)

Game 1: Colorado 1 at Stockton 3

Game 2: Colorado 2 at Stockton 3 (OT)

Game 3: Stockton at Colorado - Friday, April 6 - 6:05 p.m. (Budweiser Events Center)

Game 4: Stockton at Colorado - Saturday, April 7 - 6:05 p.m. (Budweiser Events Center) *

Game 5: Stockton at Colorado - Monday, April 9 - 6:05 p.m. (Budweiser Events Center) *

*If necessary

SERIES RECAP:

(GAME 1) STK 3 - COL 1 (4-3-12): Goaltender Olivier Roy made 35 saves in his postseason debut and the Stockton Thunder never trailed en route to a 3-1 victory over the Colorado Eagles in Game 1 of the Western Conference Quarterfinal at Stockton Arena on Tuesday. The Thunder opened the Kelly Cup Playoffs in impressive manner, owning the shots advantage at 45-36 and scoring the first three goals of the game. Garet Hunt, Jesse Fratkin and Chris D'Alvise scored for Stockton, who improved to 5-4 lifetime in Game 1 scenarios. Colorado, who lost in their ECHL playoff debut, earned its only goal on a third period marker from Aaron Slattengren.

(GAME 2) STK 3 - COL 2 (OT) (4-4-12): Chris D'Alvise completed a come from behind rally for the Stockton Thunder with a game winning goal just 17 seconds into sudden death overtime in a 3-2 victory over the Colorado Eagles in Game 2 of the Western Conference Quarterfinal at Stockton Arena on Wednesday. The Thunder, who rallied from a 2-0 deficit in the first two minutes of the game, pushed the Eagles to the brink of elimination with a 2-0 lead in the best of five series and tied the game with under four minutes remaining in regulation on Max Campbell's second of two goals.

REGULAR SEASON SERIES (Thunder: 4-5-0)

Fri. Oct. 14 Colorado 5 at Stockton 2

Fri. Oct. 21 Stockton 1 at Colorado 3

Sat. Oct. 22 Stockton 5 at Colorado 4

Fri. Feb. 10 Stockton 2 at Colorado 5

Sat. Feb. 11 Stockton 1 at Colorado 4

Sat. Feb. 18 Colorado 2 at Stockton 4

Sun. Feb. 19 Colorado 1 at Stockton 3

Tue. Mar. 6 Stockton 4 at Colorado 5

Wed. Mar. 7 Stockton 6 at Colorado 2

CLOSE SHAVE

The Thunder finished with a 16-11-5 record in one goal games this season and competed in one goal games for the last five games of the regular season. The Thunder last won in a one goal game on Mar. 28 at Idaho in a 3-2 win. Matt Reber had the game winning goal in the third period.

SEASON SERIES IN REVIEW :

The Thunder finished 4-5-0 against Colorado this season and won three of the last four games ... Colorado opened the series with a 5-2 win on Opening Night at Stockton Arena on Oct. 14 - Chad Costello scored twice for Colorado ... the two teams split a two game series, Oct. 21-22 in Colorado and the Thunder defeated the Eagles, 5-4 on Oct. 22 for its first win of the season - Matt Foy paced the Thunder offense with two goals and an assist ... Colorado swept the Thunder in a two game series from Feb. 10-11 in Loveland and the Thunder responded with a two game sweep in Stockton from Feb. 18-19 - Olivier Roy combined a 67 save total in the two wins ... the two teams split the final two games in Colorado on Mar. 6-7 ... Colorado clinched a berth in the playoffs in a 5-4 win on Mar. 6 and the Thunder closed the season series with a 6-2 victory the next night, paced by Gabriel Levesque's goal and three assists.

OVERTIME HEROICS

Chris D'Alvise's game winning goal (Game 2, Western Conference Quarterfinal vs. Colorado) in sudden death overtime was the sixth overtime playoff victory in Thunder history, marking the fifth consecutive victory in sudden death. Since Matt Thomas took over as Thunder head coach in 2008-09, Stockton is 5-1 in sudden death overtime in the playoffs. The last Thunder win in sudden death overtime on the road came in game 2 of last season's Quarterfinal round vs. Utah, scored by Kelly Czuy at Maverik Center.

GAME THREE NOTES

The Thunder is 3-5 all time in game three of the playoffs. Stockton has won three of the last five scenarios in game three and in their last win, they defeated Idaho, 3-2 in triple overtime in the 2010 Conference Final.

GAME THREE

DATE ROUND OPP. LOCATION SCORE OT GOALIES (STK/opp) GWG

Apr. 13, 2007 NQF Idaho Stockton Arena L, 1-2 (2OT) 8:06 Dubnyk/Silverthorn Derek Nesbitt

Apr. 13, 2008 NQF Las Vegas Stockton Arena L, 2-3 - Boron/Lalande Aki Seitsonen

Apr. 15, 2009 PSF Ontario Stockton Arena L, 1-5 - Pitton/Zatkoff Bud Holloway

Apr. 30, 2009 PF Las Vegas Stockton Arena W, 5-1 - Van Buskirk/DeCaro Craig Valette

Apr. 9, 2010 NQF Alaska Stockton Arena W, 7-4 - Perugini/Reid Kelly Czuy

Apr. 21, 2010 NSF Bakersfield Stockton Arena L, 0-3 - Perugini/Levasseur Dan Kissel

May 5, 2010 NCF Idaho Stockton Arena W, 1-0 (3OT) 40:36 Pitton/Bachman Ryan Constant

Apr. 9, 2011 WQF Utah Stockton Arena L, 2-4 - Sexsmith/Lamoureux Matt Reber

All-time game three record: 3-5

GOAL ORIENTED

Thunder right winger Kevin Baker was signed as a free agent on Aug. 24, 2011 and brings a wealth of offensive accomplishments to the Thunder roster. He was named ECHL Most Valuable Player in 2008-09 and his 57 goals that season were most in the league since 2000-01. He ranks second in ECHL all-time goal scoring (since 2006-07) with 177 goals. On Dec. 10 vs. Bakersfield, he collected his first hat trick of the season.

MOST GOALS, ECHL (SINCE 2006-07)

Rank Player Team GP PTS G A +/-

1 Wes Goldie AK 474 455 276 179 10

2 Kevin Baker STK 336 366 177 189 16

3 Mark Derlago IDH 281 340 174 166 41

4 Olivier Labelle REA 313 254 134 120 -15

5 Marty Flichel IDH 398 372 134 238 -4

** Statistics include regular season and playoffs

LITTLE DETAILS

Since Jan. 1, Thunder defenseman Mike Little soared to a +21 rating which is tied for the ECHL lead. His +21 rating this season finished as the league leader among all rookies and defensemen. Little was named "Thunder Defenseman of the Year" on Mar. 24. Currently competing in his first full season, Little also registered 30 points (8g-22a) in the final 42 games of the regular season.

THUNDER CROWDS ROLL IN

The Thunder has now totaled over 200,000 fans for seven consecutive seasons. Stockton has 17 sellouts in the team's franchise history. They welcomed 12 crowds of 7,000 or more at Stockton Arena last season and had its highest attendance since 2007-08, a six percent increase from 2009-10. This season, the Thunder welcomed 18 crowds of 6,000 or more to Stockton Arena and drew a season high 9,398 fans on Mar. 3 vs. Alaska. The Thunder finished third in ECHL attendance with an average of 5,916 fans per game.

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