Stockton, Calif. – The Stockton Heat clinch the fourth and final playoff spot in the Pacific Division Friday night with a 2-1 win over the Bakersfield Condors at Stockton Arena. After Bakersfield pulled their goaltender to try and win in regulation, Ryan Lomberg scored the game-winning and playoff-clinching goal in the waning seconds of the third period when he buried a rebound off a defender’s leg into the empty net. Goaltender David Rittich stopped 33 of the 34 shots he faced to earn the victory and the Heat have now collected points in 10-straight games with one game remaining before their first-ever Calder Cup Playoff appearance, as Stockton will host the Tucson Roadrunners Saturday night in the regular season finale.
|Rank||Team||GP||GR||W||L||OTL||SOL||ROW||Current Pts||Current PCT||PCT with W||PCT with OT/SOL||PCT with L|
|1||y- San Jose||67||1||43||16||3||5||38||94||0.701||0.706||0.699||0.691|
|2||x- San Diego||67||1||42||20||3||2||35||89||0.664||0.669||0.662||0.654|
HEAT GOAL: D Oliver Kylington (6) shot on the rush beats the goaltender high blocker side (unassisted), 12:31
Shots: STK – 8 | BAK – 12
Bakersfield goal: D Griffin Reinhart (7) shot from the high slot goes through traffic in front and gets past the goaltender high glove side (Allen assist), 10:11
Shots: STK – 10 | BAK – 12
HEAT GOAL: F Ryan Lomberg (12) puck is buried into the empty net off the wraparound attempt (Jankowski assist), 19:09 (EN)
Shots: STK – 12 | BAK – 10
W: David Rittich (34 shots, 33 saves)
L: Nick Ellis (29 shots, 28 saves)
Three Stars: 1- David Rittich (34 shots, 33 saves) 2- Nick Ellis (29 shots, 28 saves) 3- Ryan Lomberg (game-winning goal)
Final Shots: STK – 30 | BAK – 34
Power Plays: STK – 0/2 | BAK – 0/5
Ryan Lomberg (1 goal) scores his fourth game-winning goal this season and clinches Stockton’s spot in the 2017 Calder Cup Playoffs
Mark Jankowski (1 assist) is now on a three-game point and assist streak (3 assists)
The Heat have now earned points in David Rittich’s last six appearances (3-0-2-1)
Stockton pushes their point streak to 10 games (7-0-2-1)
The Heat become the first Calgary Flames AHL affiliate to reach the postseason since 2013-14 (Abbotsford Heat)
The last time all three of the Calgary Flames organization’s NHL, AHL and ECHL teams made it to the postseason was 2006-07 (Calgary Flames, Omaha Ak-Sar-Ben Knights, Las Vegas Wranglers)
Coach of that Las Vegas Wranglers team was Glen Gulutzan
“I gave up so many rebounds that were my fault and [my teammates] cleared it. I need to say thank you to my team.” – David Rittich on the defense in front of him.
“We’re obviously thrilled. That’s goal one, the big one is now obviously the trophy, but mission accomplished for sure. It’s a tight-knit group in there. We’ve been through a lot of highs and lows and stuck together and that just shows the character and leadership of the group so I’m proud of everyone.” – Ryan Lomberg on clinching a spot in the 2017 Calder Cup Playoffs.
“Everyone wearing our jersey tonight deserved getting that goal. I was just the lucky guy in the spot, but I’m proud of everyone that really reserved that win.” – Lomberg on scoring the game winner.
“At first I thought it was a 2-on-1, but then I saw it was a 3-on-1 and I decided early that I was going to shoot. I looked up and saw a hole on his blocker side and put it there. I thought I had that goal [in the third period], but [Ellis] made a really good save there, but it’s nice to be back. I wasn’t 100% ready against Ontario on Wednesday and felt that I needed another rehab day and wanted to be 100% and give my teammates the best that I have. Today I felt really good and thought I showed it on the ice. It’s a really good team win. I’m proud of the boys and proud to be a part of this team and really proud that we made the playoffs.” – Oliver Kylington on his goal and the team advancing to the playoffs.
“It’s a big moment, I think it’s a really important thing for our group. But the players, the way they found a way to get themselves in. It’s pretty remarkable when you think about it. The ups and downs that our group went through. With the great start, a really horrible middle portion of the season where it looked like we were out of the mix and then to the way we got ourselves into the playoffs her. We were on a good run to get ourselves in, so I’m real proud of the no quit in our group and the way we stuck with it when things didn’t look so great.” – Head Coach Ryan Huska on locking up the first playoff spot in team history.
“[Ryan Lomberg] gave you everything tonight again. You look at a story like his. He comes in this year on an AHL deal and told us at the beginning of the year that he was going to earn an NHL contract and he did that. He’s made himself one of our more valuable players because he brings you the same effort every night. For us and our coaching staff, he’s one of those guys that’s contagious – that makes people around him better or forces people to work because he’s going to drag them into the game. I think that’s why Ryan’s had a lot of success this year.” – Coach Huska on the play of Ryan Huska this year.
NEXT HOME GAME
STOCKTON HEAT vs. Tucson Roadrunners
April 15 @ Stockton Arena
First 500 fans receive a Frankie the Firebird photo card
Doors @ 6:30 p.m., Puck drop @ 7:30 p.m.