Condors Recap

Condors

If you like your hockey with an overload of high-pitched screaming, constant hip-hop music, and a dump-and-chase attack, then Wednesday morning’s Bakersfield Condors game was right up your alley.

If not, well it was a study in perseverance, tolerance, and staying awake. Either way, the end result was a positive one for the Condors who scratched out a 2-1 shootout win over the San Jose Barracuda before an announced crowd of over 7,500 predominantly school-aged kids on Field Trip Day.

The shorthanded Condors, who dressed eight AHL rookies including three centres and two defencemen, did just enough to win with what they have. Thankfully one of the haves is goaltender Laurent Brossoit, who totaled 37 saves and nearly notched his fourth home-ice shutout of the season.

“Right now, we have to play a dump-and-chase kind of game but there’s a strategy to that. You’ve got to put the puck in areas where you give yourself the best chance to retrieve it and we did a good of that. The only time we got in trouble was when they pressed us a little bit but LB (Laurent Brossoit) was there to weather the storm.” -Fleming

LINEUP:

Goal

Brossoit

Scrivens

Defence

Nikitin – Simpson

Hunt – Gernat

LaLeggia – Musil

Forwards

Hamilton – Khaira – Ford 

Moroz – Platzer – Slepyshev 

Kessy – Loiseau – Chase 

Christoffer – Currie – Roy 

FIRST PERIOD


  • San Jose’s Alex Gallant catches Braden Christoffer with his head down at centre and blasts him with a clean hit.
  • Nikita Nikitin pinches down. The puck goes back to the Barracuda who break out, but Nikitin makes a nice play with a stick-check to recover the puck, shimmies past a couple of players, and fires a shot on goal.
  • Almost simultaneously, Jujhar Khaira and Matthew Ford put shoulders into Barracuda inside the Bakersfield zone which drop their foes.
  • Kyle Platzer leads a rush into the San Jose zone then gets tangled up with a defender and is called for holding. Suspect call.
  • After the penalty kill, the Condors’ third and fourth lines put some feisty work together and keep the puck in deep.

1-0 CONDORS – On the heels of the sustained pressure, Marco Roy collects the puck behind the net, pulls the wraparound, and tucks the puck between the legs of Barracuda goalie Aaron Dell. It’s the first career AHL goal for the former second-round pick. — G: Roy (1) A: Simpson, Loiseau 8:43

“I was excited to get my first (AHL) goal. It was a nice feeling. I think if I play like this every time, I’ll get the ice time and show I can play here. All the (Norfolk call-up) guys want to stay here and prove themselves. It’s nice to contribute to a win.” -Roy

  • Condor defenders David Musil and Joey LaLeggia have a tough time in their own end against an aggressive San Jose unit of Barclay Goodrow, Trevor Parkes, and John McCarthy.
  • As the period winds down, the dump-and-chase hockey takes over.

SECOND PERIOD


  • The Condors go on the power play when Platzer is taken down. The first unit is Khaira between Ford and Platzer with Brad Hunt and Anton Slepyshev at the point. A variety of stoppages breaks any flow and leaves the unit out for almost the entire PP. Slepyshev gets half-speed one-timer away that is no threat.
  • Laurent Brossoit gets his first good test of the game as he gets a glove on a shot from Karl Stollery who was the late trailer on a San Jose rush.
  • San Jose starts to press but their only real chances come from scrambles in front of the net. Brossoit is positioned well on everything including a sneaky tip-in try from Mark Cundari.
  • With 5:57 left in the frame, Ford belts Ryan Carpenter just inside the Bakersfield blue line. The end result is a seemingly heavy-handed match penalty for an elbow to the head plus a game misconduct. The call will garner an automatic review at AHL headquarters. In the immediate, it’s a five-minute power play for the Barracuda.
  • Khaira is a dominant force on the PK. The Barracuda barely get anything going on the PP other than a double-deflected point shot that Brossoit had no trouble with.
  • San Jose’s Gregor Hanson takes a run at Greg Chase along the glass as the period ends.

THIRD PERIOD


  • Only 22 seconds into the third, San Jose goes back on the PP when Musil trips up Parkes. During the PK, Christoffer gets bumped at the Condors line and head coach Gerry Fleming makes a heated case to the refs for a head-shot call.
  • A Condors power play nets nothing except for a one-timer off the draw by Hunt that Dell snares. Right after the PP, Kale Kessy tries to get Julius Bergman to drop the gloves but the Barracuda won’t take the bait.

1-1 – Carpenter flicks a shot from the half-wall towards the net and former Oilers draft pick Bryan Lerg tips it over Brossoit’s shoulder. The goal ends Brossoit’s shutout streak at 191 minutes. — G: Lerg (6) A: Carpenter, Stollery 6:38

  • After dropping off for much of the second, the Condors get some urgency back after the goal especially creating turnovers in the neutral zone. They get just one good scoring chance, however, as Christoffer tries to go coast-to-coast but his backhand deke goes wide as Dell and a defender crash into the net.

OVERTIME

  • It’s 3-on-3 and the teams trade some 2-on-1’s. Nikitin is stripped just inside the San Jose end and Langlois goes in alone but his backhand deke is blocked off by Brossoit. Hunt tries his luck for the Condors but his slapper is stopped.

SHOOTOUT


  • Chase and Slepyshev come up empty for the Condors. Lerg and Goodrow can’t get it done for San Jose.
  • Condors captain Ryan Hamilton guns a wrist shot past Dell. Langlois puts the Barracuda’s last chance off the glass.

“It was an important game before we go on the road trip. In 3-on-3 and the shootout, it’s a little 50/50, but Hammy scored a big goal and we’re happy to get the extra point.” -Roy

THREE STARS

  1. Laurent Brossoit – Bakersfield
  2. Ryan Hamilton – Bakersfield
  3. Bryan Lerg – San Jose

“(Brossoit) has played well. We touched upon it last game about his rebound control and the way he tracks the puck when he’s playing well, and he did that today. He was big in the net and didn’t give them many second opportunities. I thought the ‘D’ did a pretty good job of boxing out so he was able to see shots.” -Fleming

Momentum killer: The kids in the crowd made for a lot of noise but even they couldn’t keep any life in the building during the dry scrape after regulation. Not only did the players look bored hovering around their benches, but the remaining crowd just about nodded off.

In the nest: The Condors (7-6-0-1, 5th Pacific Division) left immediately after the game for LAX and then a flight to Winnipeg as they take on the Manitoba Moose (3-8-1-1, 6th Central Division) Friday and Sunday … The Condors did not dress their only extra player right now – defenceman Nick Pageau. Centre Josh Currie, up from ECHL Norfolk on a PTO, filled in for injured Bogdan Yakimov. Phil McRae (illness) along with Tyler Pitlick and Jordan Oesterle (post-concussion) remained out.


Making moves: Fleming suggested the Condors will be “scouring” the ECHL for the best available players and try to add a player or two upon arriving in Manitoba. If they go with a call-up from Norfolk, it’s likely to be a PTO for Alexandre Ranger (5-3-8) or former L.A. Kings draft pick Michael Pelech (2-5-7) … The Admirals added three players yesterday: forward Thomas Gobeil (QMJHL/BCHL grad), forward Steve Mele, who was with the Southern Pro League’s Huntsville Havoc, and goalie Tyler Beskorowany, a former ECHL All-Star who was assigned by AHL Springfield (Arizona Coyotes).

  • Positive Ray of Sunshine

    The future looks bright. LB playing great, McDavid, Drai, Nurse, Klef coming on plus Hall, Nuge and Eberle.

    That super-volcano under Yellowstone should start warming up any day now.

  • CaptainLander

    Getting anxious to see how LB would do with the Oil…I know the right decision is to be patient and keep him playing well in Bakersfield. But more patience is a hard thing to deal with as an Oiler fan.

    • Mike Krushelnyski

      Having him start next year would still be rushing him, I think. Somehow obtain an actual NHL starter in the off season, and have LB back whoever that may be. A real tandem, for once.