IDAHO STEELHEADS (25-16-2) VS. WICHITA THUNDER (16-21-6)
SUNDAY, FEB 6, 2022 | 3:05 P.M. MTINTRUST BANK ARENA | WICHITA, KSRADIO: 95.3FM/1350AM KTIK | STREAM: FLOHOCKEY
Tonight's Game: The Steelheads finish their three-in-three weekend against the Wichita Thunder from INTRUST Bank Arena.
Head-To-Head: The Steelheads and Thunder have split their first two results with three of a possible four points thanks to back-to-back overtime results. The Steelheads broke a four-game win streak against the Thunder but have points in six-straight as well as three-straight road games since the start of the 2019-20 season with both losses coming as overtime results (Oct. 25, 2019 and last night). The Steelheads have two road meetings left this month against the Thunder before three home games in March. The Steelheads are 9-4-5 against the Thunder all-time as well as 5-2-4 on the road.
Last Night: The Thunder pounced early on their first power play of the night before the Steelheads came back with a similar tally of their own. Forward Colton Kehler (PP, 7:26 1st) took a one-time shot to tie the game up before forward Frederick Letourneau (9:11 1st) slipped in a wrist shot off a faceoff for his first Steelheads goal and the 2-1 lead. However, the Thunder carried momentum into the second period with a goal late in the frame and added two more across the period for the 4-2 advantage. The Steelheads battled in the third period starting with an open goal for forward Kyle Marino (PP, 6:04 3rd) to draw within one, and a late power play allowed for a deflection by forward Mason Mitchell (PP, 17:15 3rd) to force overtime, 4-4. The Thunder netted the winner at the 3:00 mark of overtime to snag the extra point.
Pick Six: Despite the loss, the Steelheads extended their point streak to six-straight games with the overtime result. It’s officially the longest point streak of the season, breaking the mark set from December 3-11 when they earned a 4-0-1 record and earned the previous high for longest win streak. In their current point run, the Steelheads have scored three goals or more in all six games while netting four or more tallies in four of those contests while averaging 4.67 goals per game. It’s the first back-to-back games with points on the road since November 7-10 in a pair of wins between Tulsa and Rapid City. The Steelheads have yet to earn points in three-straight on the road this season.
Cardiac Kids: For the second time in as many nights, the Steelheads erased a two-goal deficit in the third period to earn points. Last night was the first time the Steelheads earned points when trailing after the second period in 10 contests this season, and both goals in consecutive nights came within the final three minutes of the game with Friday’s tying goal being the first having an extra attacker on the ice. Over the team’s last five games, the Steelheads have outscored their opponents 13-3 in the third period with two of those three goals allowed coming on Friday. The Steelheads now have a plus-13 goal differential in thie third period, becoming their best period of the season over their first period (plus-nine) and second period (plus-11) totals.
Kehl's Bells: Steelheads forward Colton Kehler was part of the early scoring and the comeback with the team’s opening goal and an assist on the game-tying goal to send the contest to overtime. The Port Coquitlam, B.C. native now has three multi-point games with two of those coming during his last six contests: last night’s result and January 26 against Kansas City (2-1–3). While he only has points in three of those six games he has been consistent in his production overall, producing eight points in the first quarter and seven points in the second quarter while now having five points in seven contests. Kehler is the fifth player to reach 10 goals on the season for the Steelheads.
The Texas Connection: Steelheads defensemen Dawson Barteaux and Max Martin have been a huge boost to the offensive side of the blue line with both earning assists once again last night. Barteaux earned a two-assist night to expand his stretch to points in four of five games since returning to the lineup, while Martin extended his assist streak to five games with six assists since January 28 and now sits one back of A.J. White’s season-best six-game assist streak from November 26 through December 10. Since Barteaux’s arrival five games ago, the pair have combined for 11 assists with Martin leading all skaters in points. Both Barteaux and Martin own eight assists with Martin (12 games) playing two more contests than Barteaux (10 games).
Crinella Pan: Thunder forward Peter Crinella re-joined the team from AHL Springfield and made an imediate impact with two assists including on the game-winning goal. The East Longmeadow, Mass. product has points in four of his last five games dating back to December 18 with three multi-point games and seven points (2-5–7) in that span. He is averaging just under one point per game this season now with 26 points (13-13–26) in 27 games during his third pro season and is now six points from matching his career-best in scoring set during his rookie campaign in 2019-20.
2021-22 MOUNTAIN DIVISION STANDINGS:
|Rapid City Rush
|Kansas City Mavericks
Next Game: The Steelheads return to Idaho Central Arena on Wednesday, Feb. 9 at 7:10 p.m. to open a three-game weekend against the Tulsa Oilers. Tickets are available by going to idahosteelheads.com. Coverage begins at 6:50 p.m. on 95.3 The Ticket as well as 7:00 p.m. on Sparklight Ch. 72 & FloHockey.