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Thunder Captures First Round Home Ice Advantage, Announces Playoff Schedule vs. Utah

April 3, 2011 - ECHL (ECHL) - Stockton Thunder News Release

STOCKTON, Calif. - The Stockton Thunder has earned the #3 seed in the Western Conference and will open the 2011 Kelly Cup Playoffs against the #6 seed Utah Grizzlies in a best-of-five series (2-3 format), beginning with Game 1 of the Western Conference Quarterfinal round on Tuesday, Apr. 5 at 6:05 p.m. from Maverik Center in West Valley City, Utah.

Ticket strip packages for the 2011 Thunder playoffs presented by Golden Bear Insurance Company are now on sale and can be purchased by calling the Stockton Thunder at (209) 373-1500. Individual playoff tickets for all home games at Stockton Arena will go on sale Monday at 10:00 a.m., available in person at the Stockton Arena ticket office, by phone at (209) 373-1700 or online at www.StocktonTickets.com.

The Thunder, who ranked second in the ECHL this season with their largest attendance turnout since 2007-08 with an average of 6,382 fans per game, also finished second in the Pacific Division, tying a franchise record with 86 points and a 37-23-12 record.

It is the first time ever Stockton and Utah will meet in the Kelly Cup Playoffs and this year's appearance marks the fifth straight Kelly Cup Playoff berth in Thunder history. Last season, the Thunder advanced to the Conference Finals for the first time, defeated by Idaho, 4-2 in a best-of-seven series. Listed below is the head-to-head schedule, following a "2-3" format:

STOCKTON VS. UTAH - WESTERN CONFERENCE QUARTERFINALS Game 1: Stockton at Utah - Tuesday, April 5 - 6:05 p.m. (Maverik Center) Game 2: Stockton at Utah - Wednesday, April 6 - 6:05 p.m. (Maverik Center) Game 3: Utah at Stockton - Saturday, April 9 - 7:30 p.m. (Stockton Arena) Game 4: Utah at Stockton - Sunday, April 10 - 4:00 p.m. (Stockton Arena) * Game 5: Utah at Stockton - Tuesday, April 12 - 7:00 p.m. (Stockton Arena) * * If necessary

Current Thunder season ticket holders receive tickets to the first two rounds of the Kelly Cup Playoffs in their ticket package. Fans wishing to get priority seating on playoff tickets can do so by placing a deposit on new Thunder season tickets for the 2011-12 season.

A proud affiliate of the Edmonton Oilers and San Jose Sharks of the National Hockey League, the Thunder was voted "Best Local Sports Team" by readers of the San Joaquin Magazine for the third straight year, 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/.

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