Duluth, GA - The Adirondack Thunder took down the Atlanta Gladiators by a 4-1 final on Friday evening at the Infinite Energy Arena in Duluth, GA.
The home side got things started just 2:45 into the game as they opened up the scoring with a power-play goal. With Adirondack forward Dana Fraser in the box, Atlanta moved the puck around and found defenseman Max Everson at the point, who ripped a shot past Thunder netminder Ken Appleby for the goal. The goal for Everson, his third of the season, was assisted by Derek Nesbitt and Eric Neiley, the team high 12th point for the Gladiators’ captain Nesbitt.
Adirondack would equalize at the 5:48 mark of the first as they took advantage of a fortuitous bounce to knot the score at one. Thunder blueliner Joe Faust fired the puck in on a standard dump into the attacking zone, but as Atlanta goaltender Matt Ginn went to play the puck behind the net, it took a bounce out in front, right into the path of Mitchell Heard, who tapped it in for his fourth of the season. Faust and defenseman Ryan Culkin, playing in his first game of the season, collected the helpers on the play.
The Thunder needed just 20 seconds to take the lead as Kyle Flanagan intercepted an Atlanta clearing attempt and fed Greg Wolfe, who put a nifty move on Ginn for the finish. Flanagan, sitting at the blueline, picked off an errant clearing pass and fed the puck to Wolfe in the low slot. The Michigan State graduate faked to the backhand and went back to the forehand for the finish and his second goal of the season, with Flanagan collecting his team best eighth helper.
Flanagan was finally able to end his goalless start to the season with a tally 6:43 into the second period. After a selfless block from Ryan Constant in his own end, Michael Kirkpatrick took the puck up the ice and set up Flanagan in the slot, and the St. Lawrence graduate fired a twisted wrist shot over Ginn’s glove to make it 3-1 Thunder. Flanagan added to the eight assists with his first career ECHL goal and Constant extended his point streak to tie a career high of seven games with the secondary assist.
After a scoreless 19 minutes, the Thunder iced the game late in the third with an empty net goal, also from Flanagan, who completed his first career ECHL three-point game.
Adirondack plays the last of six straight away from home tomorrow evening, as they visit the Greenville Swamp Rabbits for a 7:00 p.m. puck drop. The Thunder finally return to the Civic Center on Wednesday for a 10:00 a.m. puck drop against the Norfolk Admirals.
Don’t miss out on the speed, skill, strength and sounds of Thunder hockey with a partial season flex or mini ticket plan today. The Adirondack Thunder and O’Toole’s Restaurant Pub Holiday Pack is on sale now, consisting of four tickets, an inaugural season Thunder hat and a $10 gift card to O’Toole’s, an $80 value for just $60. Send a jolt into your holidays with the gift of Adirondack Thunder hockey. For more information on all Thunder ticket plans, call 518-480-3355 x1 or visit echlthunder.com.
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