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Rancourt hat trick lifts Idaho past Stockton

Thursday, December 15th
Rancourt hat trick lifts Idaho past Stockton

(Stockton, CA) ? Marc Rancourt's first three professional goals all came in the same game, triggering a 6-2 Idaho Steelheads victory over the Stockton Thunder on Friday night. Derek LeBlanc added a goal and two assists in the win for IdahoThe game was played in front of 3,746 fans at the Stockton Arena. Each team tallied one goal in the first. Aaron Lewadniuk netted his fifth on a hard-working, rebound tally off of Patrick Kennedy's shot from the left-hand circle at 16:24. Stockton would tie the game on Ryan Martindale's second of the year just 90 seconds later and the two teams would take a 1-1 tie into the second period. The score stayed tied until the 12-minute mark of the second frame when Rancourt scored on a rebound off of a Chad Nehring shot. His first of the season (and evening) gave Idaho a 2-1 lead. Idaho would strike again before the period ended - barely - on the power play. Andrei Plekhanov pushed the puck from the blue line down the right-hand wall to Chad Klassen, Klassen carried the puck into the right-hand circle near the face-off circle, and then snapped a shot past Olivier Roy to up Idaho's lead to 3-1 with just two seconds left in the second period. Idaho took full control early in the third period. At the 2:10 mark of the third period, Jacob Cepis floated a nice pass to a streaking Derek LeBlanc, who beat Roy on a breakaway. His fourth of the season extended Idaho's lead to 4-1. The lead would grow to four goals on Rancourt's second of the night at 7:37 from LeBlanc and Scoran on the power play. After a Stockton got a goal back on a bad bounce, Idaho re-established the four-goal cushion on Rancourt's third of the evening, another power-play tally, from Ian Lowe and Chris Hepp. Jerry Kuhn was outstanding in net for the Steelheads, including a highlight-reel save in the second period on Stockton's Nathan Deck from point-blank range. Kuhn stopped 38 out of 40 in the win for Idaho. Olivier Roy was credited with 22 saves on 28 shots for Stockton. Idaho's power play was outstanding, converting three of four chances into tallies. Stockton was 1-2 on the man advantage. Idaho (10-12-3) and Stockton match up again Saturday night in Northern California. The team returns home for contests against rival and defending Kelly Cup champion Alaska on December 21, 22, and 23. Tickets are available by calling the CenturyLink Arena box office (208.331.TIXS) or by logging on to www.idahosteelheads.com. COORS OFFENSIVE PLAYER OF THE GAME - Marc Rancourt AQUA FINA "3 STARS" - (1) Jerry Kuhn (ID) (2) Ryan Martindale (STO) (3) Marc Rancourt (ID) Group outings at a Steelheads game are a great way to gather friends, colleagues, or co-workers for a fun night out in downtown Boise. Ticket prices are discounted and you can get a Pepsi, Double-R Ranch Hot Dog, and bag of Tim?s Cascade Chips with each ticket. Contact the Steelheads front office at 208.383.0080 or log on to www.idahosteelheads.com for more information.

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