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 Coachella Valley Firebirds

McCormick's Hat Trick Gives Firebirds 2-1 Series Lead in Calder Cup Final

June 19, 2024 - American Hockey League (AHL)
Coachella Valley Firebirds News Release

The Coachella Valley Firebirds defeated the Hershey Bears in game three of the Calder Cup Finals on Tuesday night by the final score of 6-2. Max McCormick netted the Firebirds' third hat-trick in Firebirds' history and Shane Wright added three points to help Coachella Valley take a 2-1 series lead in the Calder Cup Finals.

The Firebirds scored the opening goal for the first time in the series as Max McCormick cashed in on the powerplay. After Hershey was called for a delay of game (incorrect starting lineup) 30 seconds in, a Kole Lind shot snuck through Hunter Shepard which was knocked home by Coachella Valley's captain for his sixth of the playoffs. Shane Wright picked up the secondary assist at 2:20.

Coachella Valley added to their lead on another goal from McCormick. Wright muscled the puck from the right circle to the front of the net, on to the stick of McCormick who made a nice move to beat Shepard to make it 2-0. Hershey got back to within a goal on a 2-on-1 strike from Henrik Rybinski.

The Bears tied the game on the powerplay 1:31 into the second period on a redirection from Alex Limoges, but the Firebirds responded at 4:06. Ryker Evans' shot deflected off Lleyton Roed, who then put the puck in the net to make it 3-2. The goal was Roed's first career postseason goal. Coachella Valley regained their two-goal lead on Ryan Winterton's fourth of the playoffs. Cameron Hughes and Logan Morrison set up the play with four minutes left in the second.

The Firebirds set a franchise record for most shots on a goal in a single period, recording 23 in the second. Previous high was 21 (done twice this season).

Shane Wright's great individual effort made it a 5-2 game 7:01 into the third period. Wright came down the left wing and cut to the slot before ripping a wrist shot past Shepard for his third of the postseason. McCormick put the game away with an empty net tally with 1:36 left to complete the hat trick.

The Firebirds outshot the Bears 42-24. Coachella Valley's powerplay finished the game 1-for-3 and went 2-for-3 on the penalty kill.

The two teams will rematch for game four this Thursday, June 20th. Puck drop at Acrisure Arena is set for 7pm PT.

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