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Sunday, March 20, 2011

The Force on Thunder's Side

Tonight the Stockton Thunder held their first "Star Wars Night". The 501st Legion, Central California Garrison greeted fans for photo opportunities with Chewbacca, Princess Leia and others in the King's Room at Stockton Arena before the game. Storm Troopers made special appearances around the arena throughout the night. Darth Vader even dropped the ceremonial puck.

The Force was definitely with the Thunder, who hosted the Idaho Steelheads in the second game of a three game weekend series. The Stockton Thunder defeated the Steelheads 5-1.

Some highlights:

  • Stockton Thunder started out strong in minute 1 of the game, and played that way until the very last second. It was the best game they've played all season, a "complete" game
  • 11 different Thunder players got on the score sheet
  • Stockton's Jordan Foreman scored a short-handed goal, his 5th of the season, in second period
  • Johan Motin, recently sent down to Stockton from the Oklahoma City Barons, scored his first Thunder point, the primary assist on Jim McKenzie's power play goal
  • The Thunder got a standing ovation in the middle of the game, not after scoring a goal, but after managing to keep the puck and sustained pressure in their offensive zone for several minutes, frustrating Idaho's defense. The crowd appreciated the immense effort it took to force turnovers, keep the pucks inside the blue line, the shots on goal and going after rebounds
  • Thunder's Ryan Constant and Steelheads' Kyle Reed had a scary collision in 2nd period, and Constant was assessed for a kneeing minor
  • Fraser Clair was the only one on the Thunder to have a multi-point game-1 goal, 1 assist
  • Thunder goalie Tyson Sexsmith made 23 saves. Not just 23 saves, 23 amazing saves. The Steelheads had 5 power plays and Sexsmith was very strong in net when needed the most
  • Steelheads goalie Dusty Carlson made 28 saves out of 33 shots on goal in Idaho's loss
  • Stockton scored on 1 of 3 power plays
  • Steelheads Coach Hardy Sauter received a bench minor for unsportsmanlike conduct

Three stars of the game:

  1. Jordan Foreman
  2. Fraser Clair
  3. Tyson Sexsmith

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