Sweeping three games in three days against Pacific Division rival Bakersfield, the Stockton Thunder improved to 5-0-2 in their last seven games, and now sit atop the division with an overall record of 5-1-2 for 12 points, four points ahead of the Condors.
Stockton opened the three-game weekend series with a 7-0 win on Friday. The Thunder started quick with three goals in the first period and ended stronger with four goals in the final 20 minutes. Jesse Gimblett scored two goals while Ryan Constant and Bretton Cameron each added two assists. Bryan Pitton turned aside all 19 Bakersfield shots to record the shutout in his first appearance with the Thunder this season.
Chris D’Alvise led the way for the Thunder in Saturday’s 4-2 win notching a hat trick while Jason Pitton helped the cause with two assists. Bryan Pitton was once again strong in net for Stockton making 21 saves.
The Thunder power play keyed a 4-0 win on Sunday in the series finale scoring three times in eight opportunities. Stockton is second in the ECHL on the power play converting at 23.3 percent (10-for-43). Four different Thunder players found the back of the net with Tyson Sexsmith and Bryan Pitton sharing the shutout, combining for 19 saves.
Pitton leads the ECHL with a 0.96 goals-against average and a .956 save percentage to go along with a 2-0-0 record in his three appearances, while Gimblett is tied for second among ECHL rookies with four goals.
After playing each of its first eight games against Ontario and Bakersfield, Stockton finally leaves California this week for a three-game series in Idaho against the Steelheads on Wednesday, Friday and Saturday.