By MATT NEVALA
Anchorage Daily News
ANCHORAGE, Alaska – From a hockey standpoint, Sullivan Arena went dark for more than a week leading up to Tuesday night.
But it didn’t take the Alaska Aces long to light up the joint once puck business resumed.
Goaltender Peter Aubry proved masterful from start to finish, and Chris Heisten, Joe Talbot and Charles Linglet scored in the first seven minutes to ignite Alaska’s 6-0 pummeling of the Trenton (N.J.) Titans in Game 1 of the ECHL National Conference finals.
Wednesday at 7:15 p.m., the Aces look to extend their franchise-record five-game playoff win streak.
Talbot finished with two goals and veteran Kimbi Daniels notched a goal and an assist on an evening when 11 Aces picked up at least one point. Alaska took a 1-0 lead in the best-of-7 series.
Playing before the postseason’s third consecutive standing-room-only crowd of 6,451, the Aces blazed out of the dressing room after an eight-day layoff and never wavered, scoring on three of their first five shots against Trenton starting goaltender Andrew Allen.
“Things went right tonight, pucks went in,” said Aces defenseman Louis Mass, who finished +3 and scored his first career postseason goal early in the third period off a wild bounce off the Plexiglas. “We came off a good week of practice, so we felt really good coming into it and the crowd was amazing.”
Aubry, who seemingly gets better as the playoffs progress, stopped 27 shots in his first professional postseason shutout and fourth in Aces history. The fourth-year goalie improved to 7-1 this playoff season and left the ice to a Sullivan serenade of “Aub-ry, Aub-ry” after being named the game’s first star.