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 Wichita Thunder

Thunder Looks to Stay Alive Tonight in Rapid City

April 12, 2024 - ECHL (ECHL)
Wichita Thunder News Release

Wichita Thunder forward Jason Pineo (left) vs. the Rapid City Rush
Wichita Thunder forward Jason Pineo (left) vs. the Rapid City Rush
(Wichita Thunder)

RAPID CITY, SD - The Wichita Thunder, ECHL affiliate of the NHL's San Jose Sharks, AHL's San Jose Barracuda and powered by Toyota, continues its three-game road trip in the Black Hills tonight at 8:05 p.m. against Rapid City.

This is the ninth meeting of the season between the Thunder and the Rush. All-time, Wichita is 59-56-14 against Rapid City and 23-31-8 on the road against the Rush.

Last night, the Rush claimed a 6-2 win over the Thunder. With two minutes remaining, Wichita trailed by one before Blake Bennett scored and Rapid City pulled away for the victory. The loss snaps the Thunder's five-game point streak. The Rush snapped a four-game winless skid.

Rapid City has won four in a row in the season-series against the Thunder with all four coming at The Monument.

Wichita sits in sixth place with 63 points. Rapid City is in seventh place with 60 points.

The Thunder are still alive for a potential playoff spot, but needs to win the next two games and get some help from Tulsa and Idaho.

Trevor Gorsuch has been a workhorse for the Thunder since late January. He has started 25 of the last 32 games since January 27.

Mitchell Russell scored last night to help give the Thunder a chance late in the third period. He has goals in back-to-back games and four points in his last four outings. He was crucial in last week's overtime victories. The second-year forward from Peterborough, Ontario has 19 points (7g, 12a) in 33 games this year for Wichita.

Nick Nardella recorded his fourth goal of the season last night with two seconds to go in the second period. He has goals in back-to-back games. Nardella has 15 points (4g, 11a) in 50 games since coming over from Idaho.

The magic number to predict a Thunder victory this year has been four. When Wichita scores four or more during the course of a game, the team is 23-4-2-1. When the Thunder scores three or less, the team is 4-30-6-0.

Wichita will have to slow down Alex Aleardi and Blake Bennett tonight. The two combined for eight points last night (2g, 6a). Aleardi set a new single season ECHL high in points for the Rush. He has 79 points with 11 coming against the Thunder in the season-series (3g, 8a).

THUNDERBOLTS....Jay Dickman is tied for first in power play goals (15)...Brayden Watts is fifth in power play assists and tied for fourth in power play points (28)...Michal Stinil is tied for fourth with 28 power play points...Trevor Gorsuch is third in saves (1192)...Ryan Finnegan leads all rookies in shooting percentage (22.9%)....Wichita is 14-7-6 when scoring first...Wichita is 15-3-4-1 when leading after one...Wichita is 19-2-4-1 when leading after two...

RUSH NOTES - Alex Aleardi is fourth in the league with 79 points and has 13 (6g, 7a) in his last six games...Matt Radomsky leads the league with 22 losses, third in saves with 1168 and fifth in minutes played (2226)...Blake Bennett is fourth in rookie scoring with 62 points, first in goals by a rookie with 34 and first for shots by a rookie with 222...Tyson Helgesen is tied for second among blueliners with eight majors...

Images from this story

Wichita Thunder forward Jason Pineo (left) vs. the Rapid City Rush
Wichita Thunder forward Jason Pineo (left) vs. the Rapid City Rush


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