STOCKTON, Calif. – A valiant comeback effort from the Stockton Heat fell just short as San Jose emerged with a 6-5 victory Monday at Stockton Arena. The teams traded goals through the first 25 minutes with the game tied at three, but the Barracuda were able to gain a valuable advantage with three unanswered goals before the horn sounded on the second period. Stockton made a strong push in the third, getting goals from Rob Hamilton on the power play and from Ryan Lomberg with more than eight minutes remaining, but the Heat were unable to put another puck past Josef Korenar. Matthew Phillips, Curtis Lazar and Kerby Rychel stood out for the Heat, the trio combining for two of Stockton’s goals and coming off the sticks of Rychel and Phillips. Phillips and Rychel each picked up a third point with assists on Hamilton’s third-period marker.
SCORING AND PENALTY SUMMARY
W: Josef Korenar (26 shots, 21 saves)
L: Tyler Parsons (31 shots, 25 saves)
ND: Jon Gillies (14 shots, 14 saves)
Three Stars: 1 – Alexander True (1g,2a), 2 – Matthew Phillips (1g,2a), 3 – Curtis Lazar (2a)
Final Shots: STK – 27, SJ – 46
Power Plays: STK – 2-2, SJ – 0-2
– Stockton went 2-for-2 on the power play, going up against the league’s top PK unit. San Jose entered the contest at 87.5-percent on the year and 33-for-35 (94-percent) in the month of December.
– Kerby Rychel opened the scoring for Stockton, his fifth power play goal of the season.
– Rychel has enjoyed steady success against San Jose all year, his power play goal being his team-leading ninth point (7g,2a) against the Barracuda in the 2018-19 campaign.
– Collecting assists on Rychel’s goal were Matthew Phillips and Curtis Lazar. It was the first of two goals from that trio – the second coming from Phillips on a tic-tac-toe passing play.
– Phillips’ three points in the game extended his scoring streak to six games, with 10 points (4g,6a) in that span. Tonight was his second-consecutive three-point game and his third multi-point effort of the season.
– Rychel also finished the night with three points, his second three-point effort of the year. The game was the third time this season he recorded two or more assists in a night.
– Brett Pollock’s goal in the first period was his second of the season. Each of his goals have come over the Heat’s last four games.
– Buddy Robinson extended his scoring streak to five games (2g,5a) with his assist on Pollock’s goal.
– Rob Hamilton’s third period goal was his first since Nov. 23, snapping a 12-game goalless streak.
– Ryan Lomberg’s goal in the third frame was his first since Nov. 11 – a span that included seven games with the Heat.
– With the loss, Stockton drops to 1-6 on the year against San Jose. The Heat are 13-9-3-0 against the rest of the AHL.
The Heat continue their five-game home stand with Autism Awareness Night presented by 51Fifty and the Carlos Vieira Foundation on Friday, a 7 p.m. puck drop against the Tucson Roadrunners. The game is the first of two this weekend at Stockton Arena, Pucks N’ Paws and Cowboy and Western Agricultural Night taking place Saturday against Colorado. Stockton will then take on San Diego on Wednesday, Jan. 9 in the next iteration of Dollar Beer Night and will close out the home stand on Saturday, Jan. 12 against Ontario at 6 p.m.