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Merchant Hat-Trick Leads Steelheads to 7-4 Win over Wichita

Thursday, March 24th
Merchant Hat-Trick Leads Steelheads to 7-4 Win over Wichita

BOISE, Idaho For the second-straight game, the Idaho Steelheads (32-27-3) lead with a hat-trick, this time by forward Will Merchant, in a 7-4 win over the Wichita Thunder (24-29-8) on Wednesday night at Idaho Central Arena in front of 5,096 fans, the 21st sellout of the season.THE GAME’S STO­­RYThe Thunder netted two goals in the first two minutes to lurch ahead quickly, but a key timeout called by the Steelheads brought them in before taking over the game. Steelheads forward A.J. White (3:42 1st) led the way back with a put-back tally within two minutes of the opening strikes to cut the lead in half, 2-1. A pair of multi-goal scorers notched back-to-back tallies starting with forward Colton Kehler (9:39 1st) and followed by forward Will Merchant (10:24 1st) to snag the lead away, 3-2. After the Thunder notched a tying tally in the second period, the Steelheads added two more with Merchant (PP, 8:50 2nd) and Kehler (17:51 2nd) pushing through their second goals for a 5-3 advantage. Merchant (PP, 14:41 3rd) completed the hat-trick late in the third period on his second power play goal before the Thunder got one back. Forward Ryan Dmowski (EN, 18:30 3rd) finished the night with the clinching goal in the 7-4 win.ICCU 3 STARS OF THE GAME1. IDH – Will Merchant (hat-trick)2. IDH – Colton Kehler (2 goals, assist)3. IDH – Jordan Timmons (two assists)PEPSI PLAYER OF THE GAMEWill Merchant (F) – first-career hat-trickSTEELHEADS STANDOUTS- Will Merchant: In his 322nd pro game, Merchant scored his first-career hat-trick over the course of three periods. He is also fourth in games played (252) in the Steelheads ECHL era and owns 15 goals and 28 points on the year.- Colton Kehler:Kehler earned his second multi-goal game of the season with a three-point night in the victory. He also owns 28 points (13-15—28) this season now through 52 games.- Jordan Timmons:In his pro debut, Timmons earned his first multi-point game with two assists, helping on both tallies by Kehler.- Ryan Dmowski:After his six-point night, Dmowski earned another three points with one goal and two assists. He owns nine points (6-3—9) in three games since his Steelheads debut last Friday.CATCH OF THE DAYFor the second-straight game, the Steelheads saw players earn hat-tricks with Ryan Dmowski on Saturday and Will Merchant on Wednesday, both of whom earned their first-career hat-tricks. The back-to-back hat-tricks marks the third time in the ECHL era that the Steelheads earn hat-tricks in consecutive nights last done on Mar. 10-12, 2010 with Mark Derlago and Mark McCutcheon on the road against the Victoria Salmon Kings and first completed as the first two hat-tricks in the ECHL era recorded by Miguel Delisle on Dec. 17-19, 2003 at home against the Bakersfield Condors. The Steelheads have five hat-tricks this season, which is the third-most in the ECHL era trailing the eight earned in 2009-10 and six in the 2010-11 campaign, however all five hat-tricks this year have come from different players.ATTENDANCE: 5,096 (21st sellout)LOOKING AHEADThe Steelheads and Thunder meet again on Friday, Mar. 25 at 7:10 p.m. from Idaho Central Arena. 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.

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Wednesday, March 20th
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Tulsa Oilers @ Idaho Steelheads
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