Stockton, Calif. – The Stockton Heat received multi-point efforts from both Linden Vey and Brett Kulak, but their comeback effort comes up just short against the Bakersfield Condors in a 4-2 loss Saturday night at Stockton Arena. Vey returned to form with a shorthanded goal in the second period that put the Heat on the board – his 200th AHL career point. Meanwhile, Brett Kulak netted his second goal of the season in his first game back in Stockton since being returned to the Heat from Calgary on Friday. Unfortunately for the Heat, Nick Ellis and his 45-save performance proved tough to beat as the Heat extend their winless streak to 10 (0-9-1-0). Up next for the Heat is a date with the Texas Stars this coming Wednesday for a 7:00 p.m. puck drop.
Bakersfield goal: F Joey LaLeggia (11) catch-and-shoot opportunity from the top of the nearside faceoff circle goes high glove past the goaltender (Puljujarvi, Lander assists), 6:57
Bakersfield goal: D David Musil (3) puck pops out of scramble in the slot and is put back through traffic past the goaltender’s blocker (Hamilton, Beck assists), 12:08
Shots: STK – 23 | BAK – 8
Bakersfield goal: F Anton Lander (16) 2-on-1 rush leads to a backdoor tap-in that beats the outstretched goaltender blocker side (LaLeggia, Fayne assists), 8:03
HEAT GOAL: F Linden Vey (9) shot on the rush from the far side faceoff circle goes cross-cage and beats the goaltender high blocker side (Kulak assist), 17:31 (SH)
Shots: STK – 16 | BAK – 10
HEAT GOAL: D Brett Kulak (2) slap shot from just outside the top of the nearside faceoff circle goes through traffic and beats the screened goaltender blocker side (Vey, Kylington assists), 7:17
Bakersfield goal: F Josh Currie (10) shot from the opposite blueline bounces into the empty net (unassisted), 19:29 (EN)
Shots: STK – 8 | BAK – 9
W: Nick Ellis (47 shots, 45 saves)
L: David Rittich (26 shots, 23 saves)
Three Stars: 1 – Nick Ellis (47 shots, 45 saves) 2 – Linden Vey (1 goal, 1 assist) 3 – Anton Lander (1 goal, 1 assist)
Final Shots: STK – 47 | BAK – 27
Power Plays: STK – 0/3 | BAK – 0/3
Linden Vey (1 goal, 1 assist) ties Mark Jankowski for the team-lead in multi-point games (7)
Vey earned his 200th and 201st points in his AHL career
Vey also snapped a streak of 21-straight games without a goal and 12 games without a point
Brett Kulak (1 goal, 1 assist) earned his first multi-point game on the season
Stockton has now gone winless in their last 10 games (0-9-1-0)
23 shots in the first period is the most in a single period for Stockton this season and ties all-time marker (4/6/16 vs ONT)
Vey’s shorthanded tally is the fourth shorthanded goal for the Heat this season (Vey has 2 shorthanded goals this season)
Vey and Morgan Klimchuk are now tied for the Heat team-lead with two shorthanded points apiece
Tonight was the first time the Heat had over 40 shots in a game since 12/8/16 at SJ and tonight’s 47 shots is the most in a single game for the Heat this season
“We’re just not getting bodies in front of the net. We had a lot of shots and a lot of chances and you just got to go to those [dirty]areas and find a way to get the puck in the net. We press and press and get opportunities, but then give up an odd-man rush and they ended up capitalizing on a couple of them. It’s a pretty frustrating time right now, we just need to dig deep and find a way to get that first win and I think things will turn around for us.” – Linden Vey on the frustrations for the Heat of late.
“It’s the details. We have a lot of zone time and are creating chances, and then all of the sudden, they get a bounce or we don’t cover the guy and they end up getting a grade a opportunity and score. Our goaltenders have been playing awesome all year and we’re just not giving them any support.” – Vey on how things are going to turnaround.
“It’s on us obviously. We know the gameplan, we need to go out there and execute. Myself included on the first goal, I have to take the guy away who got the shot off. It’s the little things, like coming back off the rush. It happens, that’s the game, good teams capitalize on your mistakes, like we capitalized on a couple of theirs, but we have to clean up our [defensive]zone.” – Brett Kulak on the defensive struggles early in the game.
“We gave up a lot of chances. When you look at their shot totals, they weren’t high, but some of the chances we gave up were quality chances and you can’t do that against good players.” – Head Coach Ryan Huska on tonight’s shot differential.
“It wasn’t necessarily a bad start from us. I thought we did a lot of good things in the first period. We made a couple of mistakes and they’re bigger mistakes where pucks end up in the back of our net. I thought we did a lot of good things, we just weren’t able to get that first goal and we were forced to chase the game again tonight.” – Coach Huska on the first period performance.
“Linden was on tonight. He had a little bit of edge to his play and I thought he played very well, so it was nice to see the old Linden Vey back tonight.” – Coach Huska on Linden Vey getting back on the board.