Boise, ID – The Adirondack Thunder continued their strong start to the season as they took the series opener against the Idaho Steelheads with a 6-3 victory on Wednesday evening at CenturyLink Arena.
After a fast start from Idaho, the Thunder opened the scoring 9:24 into the game as forward Matt Bailey extended his point streak to six games with the first goal of the evening. After an Adirondack power play ended, forward Ty Loney collected a pass from teammate Mathieu Broduer in the slot, faked a shot and hit Bailey at the back post, where the center tapped home for his third tally of the season. Loney and Brodeur collected the assists on the play for the Thunder, the team leading seventh of the season for Loney.
Adirondack extended its lead to two goals as forward Brian Ward converted from the high slot to put the Thunder ahead 2-0 with just 4:24 remaining in the opening period. Bailey lofted a pass over the top of the Idaho defense that found Phil Lane, who collected it behind the Idaho net. Lane hit Ward in front, where the Haverhill, MA native one-timed the pass by Steelheads’ netminder Landon Bow for his team leading sixth tally of the season. Lane and Bailey collected the assists on the play, giving Bailey his second multi-point game of the season.
With the Thunder on their first penalty kill of the evening, Idaho got on the board as Travis Ewanyk fired home for his third goal of the season. After Adirondack was unable to clear the zone, Idaho took control of the puck and it fell to Baldwin in the right hand circle, where the puck tipped off of a diving Thunder defenseman and snuck past Appleby to cut the advantage to 2-1. Anthony Luciani and Brandon Anselmini collected the assists on the play, the sixth of the season for Anselmini.
Less than two minutes later, the Thunder got the goal right back as Mathieu Brodeur banged home a pass at the back post to re-gain the two goal advantage. After a sustained shift in the offensive zone, Ward cycled the puck to Lane, who moved out of the corner and hit Brodeur at the back post, where the defenseman settled and slotted home for his third tally of the season. Lane and Ward collected the assists on the play, giving both all three players multi-point games.
Once again, a quick goal followed as Idaho clawed within one for the second time on the evening, courtesy of Joe Basaroba’s second goal of the season. Off of a faceoff in the offensive end, defenseman Kyle Jean hit Basaroba in the high slot with a one-touch pass and the right-handed winger collected and beat Adirondack netminder Ken Appleby on the blocker side for the tally. Jean and Charlie Dodero picked up the assists on the play, the second helper of the season for both players on the power-play goal.
In what turned into a stretch of goals, Adirondack answered once again in less than two minutes as Lane picked up his third point of the evening with a deflection in front. Defenseman Mike Bergin let go a one-timer from the right point that was tipped by Lane in front and past Bow for Lane’s sixth goal of the season, re-tying Ward for the team lead. Bergin and defenseman Roman Dyukov picked up the helpers on the play, the first point of the 2016-17 season for Bergin.
The Steelheads concluded the high-scoring period with the final goal at the 15:02 mark of the middle stanza, as Travis Walsh scored his first of the season. With the puck on the left hand boards, Walsh lofted a puck headed high and wide, but it took a ricochet off of a Thunder player’s glove and found its way past Appleby. Jefferson Dahl and Will Merchant picked up the assists on the play for Idaho, the team leading tenth helper for Dahl.
The visitors opened the third period scoring just 41 seconds in with the slickest goal of the evening. After Bailey hit Gunnar Hughes with a head-man pass, Hughes held up in the offensive zone and hit the trailer, Wall, who went forehand-to-backhand for the goal, his second of the season. The tally for Wall gave him his second career multi-point game in the ECHL, while Bailey picked up his third point of the evening, a career high, with the secondary assist.
With just over two minutes on the clock, Adirondack iced the game with an empty-net marker from Ward. The tally for Ward was his second of the night and team-high seventh of the season.
The Thunder continue their stretch of eight consecutive road games as they take on Idaho again on Friday and Saturday, with puck drop once again slated for 9:10 p.m. Adirondack Thunder individual and group ticket packages are available for just $13 per ticket in addition to new Thunder mini-packs, consisting of four tickets and a gift card to a local restaurant for just $65. Call 518-480-3355 x1 or visit ECHLThunder.com/tickets to customize a plan and reserve your seat locations today.
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