STOCKTON, Calif. – Led by Juuso Valimaki and Dillon Dube, the Stockton Heat erased a 4-1 second period deficit to tie the game at four before dropping Friday’s game by a 6-4 final at Stockton Arena. The pair of 20-year-old prospects each recorded a goal and an assist in the come-from-behind effort as Stockton pushed division-leading San Jose to the brink. The Heat also got a boost from netminder Tyler Parsons, who was sharp in relief with 20 saves on 22 shots faced. For the visiting team, the Barracuda were led by Alexander True and Dylan Gambrell – each lighting the lamp twice in the game and True claiming the game-winning goal. The teams will meet once again on Saturday, a 1:15 p.m. puck drop at the SAP Center.
SCORING AND PENALTY SUMMARY
W: Josef Korenar (36 shots, 32 saves)
L: Tyler Parsons (22 shots, 20 saves)
ND: Jon Gillies (17 shots, 4 goals)
Three Stars: First – Alexander True (2g), Second – Dylan Gambrell (2g), Third – Juuso Valimaki (1g,1a)
Final Shots: STK – 36, SJ – 39
Power Plays: STK – 1-2, SJ – 0-2
– Curtis Lazar’s first-period goal was his 15th of the season and his 34th point, keeping him within three of team leader Kerby Rychel, who registered an assist on Lazar’s marker.
– Juuso Valimaki also tallied a helper on Lazar’s goal and later added one of his own, his second professional goal and first in the AHL. Through three games in Stockton, the blueliner now has a goal and two assists.
– Tyler Graovac’s power play goal was his second of the season and brings his total to 10 points on the year on the man-advantage. Graovac has 13 total special teams points (5g,8a) with three shorthanded goals on the year.
– Assists on Graovac’s goal went to Rinat Valiev and Dillon Dube, extending Dube’s scoring streak to six games. Dube later scored to bring Stockton with one in the third period, pushing his totals to three goals and four assists in his six-game streak.
– The Heat maintained their special teams superiority over San Jose, going 1-for-2 on the power play to bring the season total to 10-for-30 in nine meetings. On the flip side, Stockton is limiting the Barracuda to just 4-for-37 on the man-advantage.
– The contest was the third-straight game in which Stockton erased a third period deficit and drew even.
The Heat and Barracuda square off once again Saturday, a 1:05 p.m. puck drop in San Jose, and then Stockton hits the road for a pair of games at Colorado next weekend. The next game at Stockton Arena will take place on Saturday, Feb. 16 – Safety Night and Law Enforcement Appreciation.