Almeida Records OT Winner to Knock Off Wichita

Saturday, January 16 2016 10:21 PM

West Valley, UT (Jan. 16th) - Barry Almeida redirected the game-winner two minutes into overtime to help Utah (22-13-2-0) win their second in a row over Wichita (9-23-2-4) by the final score of 3-2 at the Maverik Center on Saturday night.

Kenton Miller and Landon Oslanski each had a goal for the Thunder while Eric Springer had a pair of assists.

Last night's contest was dominated by special teams and that trend continued tonight as the two teams combined for 14 power plays. Miller gave the Thunder a 1-0 lead with a shorthanded goal late in the first period. He hustled to a loose puck in the Grizzlies zone, got around a defender near the goal line and beat Matt Hackett for his eighth of the season.

Utah tied the game midway through the second period with a goal from Jon Puskar, tallying his sixth of the year. On Wichita's sixth power play chance, Oslanksi fired a one-timer from the blue line that beat Hackett and the Thunder re-gained the lead, up 2-1. Charles Sarault tied the game less than three minutes later with a slap shot from the blue line that got through Grant Rollheiser.

In the third, Utah had two power plays but weren't able to break through. The two teams combined for 19 shots on net in the frame as the final horn sounded.

During the overtime session, Wichita had possession during the first minute before Utah brought the puck back up the ice. Marc Cantin walked off the wall and let a shot go that Almeida got a piece of and beat Rollheiser to the glove side for the game-winner.

Wichita has scored a power play goal in six-straight games. Miller has points in four-straight games (1g, 3a). Eric Springer has assists in his last four contests (5a). Ian Lowe has assists in back-to-back games. Oslanski has goals in four of the last five outings. Kale Kerbashian added an assist, giving him points in four of the five games since being acquired from Rapid City.

Rollheiser takes the overtime loss, stopping 35 of 38 shots. Hackett claims his first-ever ECHL win, stopping 23 of 25 shots he faced.

Wichita went 1-for-7 on the power play. Utah was 0-for-7 on the man advantage.

The Thunder have the day off tomorrow before finishing their western swing on Monday afternoon against the Grizzlies at 2:35 p.m. CST.

Individual tickets for all games are on sale now. Tickets can be purchased at the INTRUST Arena Box office, by calling 855-755-SEAT or go online at www.selectaseat.com.

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About the ECHL

The ECHL began in 1988-89 with five teams in four states and has grown into a coast-to-coast league with 28 teams in 20 states and one Canadian province for its 27th season in 2014-15. There have been 541 players who have started their career in the ECHL have gone on to play in the National Hockey League, including 29 who made their NHL debuts in the 2013-14 season. The ECHL had affiliations with 26 of the 30 NHL teams in 2013-14, marking the 17th consecutive season that the league had affiliations with at least 20 teams in the NHL. Further information on the ECHL is available on its website at ECHL.com, as well as on Twitter and Facebook.

 

-Thunder-