San Jose, Calif. – The Stockton Heat open their preseason schedule with a gritty win over the San Jose Barracuda 4-2 Thursday night in San Jose. Louick Marcotte (1 goal, 2 assists) and Garet Hunt (2 assists) both earned a star as they led the offense, while goaltender Eric Hartzell stopped 30 of 32 shots to earn the victory. The active blueline style that Head Coach Ryan Huska hopes to model off of the Calgary Flames was on display, as top line pairing Dustin Stevenson and Aaron Johnson led the team in shots with 7 combined. Johnson also sealed the deal with the game winner midway through the final frame. The Heat will hit the ice back home in the friendly confines of Stockton Arena Friday night when the Bakersfield Condors stroll into town for the second and final preseason game on the Heat’s schedule.
-Shots: STK – 8 | SJ – 12
HEAT GOAL: F Michael Kirkpatrick (1) turnaround shot from the top of the far side circle goes bar down over the goaltender’s blocker (Kylington, Smith assists), 4:34
HEAT GOAL: F Louick Marcotte (1) bad angle shot from the near side corner sneaks between the goaltender’s pad and the post (Hunt, Fraser assists), 13:45
San Jose goal: F Petter Emanuelsson (1) shot from the high slot finds its way through heavy traffic and past the goaltender (Helewka assist), 19:23
-Shots: STK – 5 | SJ – 9
San Jose goal: D Julius Bergman (1) shot from the near side faceoff dot goes high past the goaltender (Emanuelsson assist), 0:12
HEAT GOAL: D Aaron Johnson (1) catch and shoot from the slot on a tic-tac-toe passing play is ripped past the goaltender (Hunt, Marcotte assists), 9:52
HEAT GOAL: F Morgan Klimchuk (1) shot from the high slot is redirected in behind the goaltender (Marcotte, Lomberg assists), 17:54 (PP)
-Shots: STK – 13 | SJ – 11
W: Eric Hartzell (32 shots, 30 saves)
L: Aaron Dell (17 shots, 14 saves)
Troy Grosenick (9 shots, 8 saves) replaced by Dell in the second period
-Three Stars: 1) Louick Marcotte (1 goal, 2 assists) 2) Julius Bergman (1 goal) 3) Hunt (2 assists)
-Final Shots: STK – 26 | SJ – 32
-Power plays: STK – 1/4 | SJ – 0/2
-Louick Marcotte scored a goal and added 2 assists in his Heat debut
-Garet Hunt earned 2 assists, including the primary on the game winner, and added a fight in the first
-Aaron Johnson scored the game-winning goal in the third
-Michael Kirkpatrick scored a highlight reel goal to open the scoring in the second
-Eric Hartzell (30 saves) earned the victory in his first game with the Heat
“It was a great team effort. We try to be a physical team every time we hit the ice and tonight I thought we did a good job of getting on them quick, especially in the third.” – Louick Marcotte on how he thought the game went.
“Garet [Hunt] is a veteran player that has a lot of experience playing this game. He is more than just a fighter. He can skate and can pass very well. I really followed his lead tonight and it worked out.” – Marcotte on playing on a line with Garet Hunt for the first time.
“We have really been preaching about trying to drive it wide and find a lane to shoot from. Luckily the pass was there and the defense backed off. The puck sort of stuck on the ice there for a second so I had to do a spin to grab it and luckily it went in.” – Michael Kirkpatrick on his goal that went bar down to open the scoring.
“I thought it was a good building block. The first couple periods maybe didn’t go the way we wanted them to, but we picked it up as the game went on. I really thought it was something to build on.” – Aaron Johnson on his thoughts on the game as a whole.
“It’s probably going to be like that all year. Not sure that’s necessarily how we want it, but when the guys are sticking together like that, that’s exactly what we want to do. We have to stick up for one another and win those scrums.” – Johnson on the physicality of the game.
“This is a great opportunity from the Calgary organization to let me come out here and participate in training camp.” – Garet Hunt on his opportunity to tryout for the Heat.
“They were both really nice plays by [Louick Marcotte]. The first one he just snuck past the goalie on the weakside. Then [Aaron Johnson] with a really nice finish on the game winner. I thought my linemates played really well and it was a lot of fun out there.” – Hunt on his 2 assists and playing with Louick Marcotte and Dana Fraser.
“First it was neat to put and see that jersey on for the first time so I think that was enjoyable and fun for everyone who played tonight and was a part of it. I thought we started a little slower, but as the game wore on I thought we got better and started to make plays in the third period. We were able to capitalize on some really nice chances and we were really proud of the way our guys stood together tonight and that’s important because we’re trying to build a family atmosphere here and take care of each other and I thought a lot of our guys stepped up tonight.” – Coach Huska on the first time the Stockton Heat took the ice in game action
“We never saw Worcester last year so I didn’t really know how their team plays, but when you play a team 12 times, there’s going to be some intensity and we’ll have some pretty good battles. That’s just the way it’s going to be.” – Coach Huska on the chippy play that began to occur late in the game
“[Louick Marcotte] was one of those guys I thought started slow but as the game wore on I think he gained quite a bit of confidence where he was one of our guys that was consistently making plays. When he was on the ice while we were on the power play I thought our power play looked good. On Aaron Johnson’s goal, he made a great play off the rush so I liked his game tonight and that’s what we need to see from him.” – Coach Huska on Louick Marcotte’s 1 goal and 2 assist performance
“I thought [Garet Hunt] was really good tonight. He’s a guy that knows his role and understands who he is and he’s an energy guy and every shift that he was on the ice, he was noticed and that’s what you want to see from him. Him setting the tone from the good scrap he had tonight, hunting a guy down on the forecheck that allowed Louick [Marcotte] to score that bad angle goal was the result of his hard work. So I like what we saw from him. He brings a lot of energy to the game and I can see why when we skate [at Stockton Arena] his name is hung in the rafters. He’s a pretty good player to have in your group.” – Coach Huska on Garet Hunt’s two assist performance
“I thought [Eric Hartzell] was pretty solid for us in net tonight. I thought the second period in particular they carried a lot of play. He wasn’t as busy in the third bud up until that point he made the saves we needed him to make. We talked before this about him and [Kent Simpson] having an opportunity to play full games and prove themselves and I think he did very well tonight and left a good impression in his one game. Now Simpson will get his chance tomorrow which was our plan for the full weekend.” – Coach Huska on Eric Hartzell’s 30 save night
NEXT HOME GAME
STOCKTON HEAT vs. Bakersfield Condors
Friday, October 2 @ Stockton Arena
Doors open @ 6:30 p.m., Puck drops @ 7:30 p.m.
UPCOMING HOME GAME
STOCKTON HEAT vs. Rockford IceHogs
Saturday, October 10 @ Stockton Arena
Doors open @ 6:30 p.m., Puck drops @ 7:30 p.m.