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Gulls Bi-Weekly Report 2
By Thomas Harrington
The Gulls had a light schedule over the last two weeks, playing in only three games and losing all three of them. The good news is that two of those losses came after regulation, meaning San Diego was still able to pick up two points in those three losses. Through eight games, the Gulls have a record of 3-3-1-1 and are at the bottom of the Pacific Division. However, given the number of players who’ve been with the Ducks instead of the Gulls, the Gulls should improve as the season goes along.
The Gulls started things off by hosting the Stockton Heat. This game had a terrible start, as Stockton took a 4-0 lead in the first period. Kevin Boyle was pulled after the first; Jared Coreau played the rest of the game and fared much better. The Gulls didn’t give up, and Luke Gazdic, playing in only his second game with the Gulls, got the comeback started, scoring twice in the second period. In the third, Giovanni Fiore made it 4-3, and Kalle Kossila, playing in his first game of the season after recovering from injury, made it 4-4. Neither team scored through the rest of regulation or overtime, and the game went to a shootout. This was one of the longer shootouts, as it went 14 rounds before Stockton finally claimed the 5-4 victory. Of the 14 San Diego skaters who had a chance in the shootout, only Sam Carrick and Chase De Leo were able to score. Despite the shootout loss, this was a great comeback effort by the Gulls.
San Diego next hosted Tucson, the team who defeated them in the first two games of the season. It was a close game, but the Gulls were unable to beat Tucson for the third time this season. Neither team scored a goal in the first, and Kossila scored his second goal in two games to give San Diego a 1-0 lead in the second. Tucson tied the game at one, but Ben Thomson put the Gulls back on top. The Roadrunners scored to tie the game up again before the second was over. In the third, Tucson took their first lead of the game, but Kossila scored his second of the game to tie things up before regulation was over. In overtime, it looked like it might go to a shootout, but Tucson ended up scoring late in the extra session and taking the 4-3 overtime win. Despite the loss, the Gulls had now picked up a point in five straight games.
The Gulls finished up the last two weeks with their first game in November, traveling to Ontario to take on the Reign. This game started off well for the Gulls, as Josh Mahura scored his first career professional goal late in the first period. Ontario scored the lone goal in the second to tie the game. In the third, Ontario scored two goals in less than 20 seconds to take a 3-1 lead. Max Jones made it a one goal game with his first of the season, but San Diego wasn’t able to score again. Ontario scored into the empty net to make it 4-2.
The Gulls have another light schedule over the next two weeks, playing only four games. They’ll start out by traveling to Tucson and taking on the Roadrunners for the fourth time this season. The Gulls will then return home for a lengthy homestand, where they will host Colorado twice and then finish things off against Bakersfield.
Over the last couple of weeks, Kossila has really stood out. He scored three goals in three games and earned a brief call-up to Anaheim. Troy Terry had three assists in three games, giving him eight points in five games. Those two have been among San Diego’s most dangerous players over the last couple weeks, and their strong play will hopefully continue over the next couple of weeks as well.
Sometimes, it seems like Anaheim’s roster is made up of mostly Gulls players. However, San Diego still has some players who could end up in the NHL. Kossila and Terry are the two most obvious ones, but Jones is another option too. Sam Steel was just assigned to the Gulls and he’s only played in one game so far. If he starts tearing the AHL up, similar to what Terry has been doing, he could be back up in the NHL sooner rather than later. On defense, Jaycob Megna, Jake Dotchin, or the recently assigned Andrej Sustr could make their way to Anaheim as well.
Similar to the Ducks, the Gulls have stumbled out of the gate, but things will hopefully look up for them as more players arrive to help out. The additions of Steel, Terry, Jones, and Kossila have already made them a more dangerous team. As Anaheim gets healthier, the Gulls should get even better.
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November 5th, 2018