WICHITA, Kan. – Tuesday night’s contest between the Kansas City Mavericks and Wichita Thunder was the only game in the ECHL, and the final home game for the Thunder before the Christmas holiday.
Gaining some momentum after a bad weekend on the road was important for the Thunder, since they will play the next 24 games within the division, 12 of them coming in the confines of INTRUST Bank Arena.
Early on, it looked like the “bus-leg” phenomena had hit both teams, especially considering both had traveled across the country for their matchup. Still, though, the Thunder were able to open the scoring 7:44 into the contest, when Jakob Stukel tipped a seeing-eye shot through the pads of Nick Schneider and gave Wichita a 1-0 lead.
After several minutes of suffocating forecheck and several chances on Stuart Skinner, the Mavericks capitalized when Darian Dziurzynski scored to level the game at one goal through the game’s first 20 minutes.
With Keoni Texeira in the box for Wichita, Kansas City connected on the power play in the early stages of the second period. With Stuart Skinner fumbling the puck, David Dziurzynski put the rebound by the Thunder rookie netminder to give Kansas City a 2-1 lead.
As the period wore on, however, you could tell the Thunder were finding a rhythm offensively. In their first power-play of the night, PC Labrie tipped a shot by Schneider to even the game at 2-2.
From there, Wichita owned the remaining 23:35, scoring three goals in the final period.
Labrie added his second, on this highlight reel goal at 4:42 of the third:
Minutes later, Mark MacMillan added his seventh of the season, followed by Jeremy Beaudry adding his third of the campaign. In all, eight different Thunder players scored points on the night, with Labrie and Iacobellis each potting three points on the night.
Iacobellis and Cuddemi both extended their point-streaks to nine contests. Iacobellis, the Thunder rookie, also moved into a tie for fourth place overall in league scoring with 31 on the campaign (10G, 21A).
Wichita has registered at least one power play goal in 17 of their last 18 games, including nine straight contests.
Skinner picked up the win in his fifth straight start and improves to 7-8-0-2 on the season.
The Thunder will close out the pre-Christmas portion of their schedule with a pair of games in the Black Hills on Friday and Saturday nights. You can listen to both games on The Sin Bin app, with The Sin Bin Pregame show starting each night at 7:35 pm CT.