WICHITA, Kan. – Wichita beat Allen in more ways than one Saturday night, as Stefan Fournier netted his first career hat trick en route to a 4-1 Thunder win.
Following a 4-0 shutout win Friday night, all eyes turned to Stuart Skinner, who was coming off 120 of his best minutes of the season.
Skinner’s night did not get off to the start he had hoped though, allowing a goal at 7:37 of the first on a play where Braylon Shmyr and Spencer Asuchak both rushed the net, the puck eventually rolling in. Asuchak was credited with the goal, his 19th of the season.
Allen would carry the 1-0 lead into the first intermission while Wichita led 14-10 in the shots category.
Wichita found it’s offensive start at 1:34 as Fournier net his first of the night, scoring on his own rebound.
The remainder of the second period stayed tied, both teams feeling each other out once again. The teams left the ice for the second intermission tied 1-1, Wichita still leading in shots 26-23.
At 1:45 in the third, Fournier found a way past Lukas Hafner once again, this time skating hard until the puck went over the line. Just over eight minutes later, Fournier completed the natural hat trick with a nice goal off a feed from Ryan Van Stralen. The assist was Van Stralen’s second of the night.
Fournier had scored two goals in four different games in his career, but never three in a game. When asked about his mentality, his answer was simple.
“Get Three…,” Fournier said. “It was my first pro hat trick.], first in six years… Let’s hope i don’t have to wait that long for the next one.”
Later in the period, Steven Iacobellis added his name to the scoresheet, his team-leading 22nd goal of the season. The powerplay goal came off a double minor to Asuchak for attempting to spear.
This is when the game began to feel more and more like a typical Allen/Wichita game.
With seconds remaining in the game, Curt Gogol got into it with assistant coach Tyler Elbrecht and both were sent to the dressing rooms for the night.
It was after the final horn sounded that it got serious. Just after the horn, Jared Wilson and netminder Lukas Hafner got into it, soon to be followed by players from both benches.
At the end of it all, 197 penalty minutes were handed out in total in the game, by far the most in a game this season. Suspensions are likely to be doled out on Sunday.
Wichita outshot Allen 39-33, Fournier leading the way with 10 shots on goal.
Wichita concludes their 2018-19 season on Sunday afternoon at Tulsa. With a win, Wichita will finish the year in fifth place of the Mountain Division. Puck drop is scheduled for 4:05 p.m., with The Sin Bin pregame show with Matthew Harding beginning at 3:40 p.m.
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