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Photo Credit: Graphic by Mike Gould

Heat Post-Game: They brought the Reign

The Stockton Heat and Ontario Reign faced off on Monday night for the only game in the AHL that night. It was the second and final game of their back to back series and the result was uncharacteristically not in the Heat’s favour. Their 13-game point streak was snapped as they officially pick up their first regulation loss by falling 5-3 to the Reign.

Not enough to finish it

Well, it has been fun. That’s not to say this is the peak of the season and the Heat have no ground to make up from here. Going back to a full game schedule, the Heat were bound to lose a game eventually. Monday was it. 

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The Heat held the edge for most of the game and completely lost control of the game come the third period. The Reign opened up scoring early in the first just for Matthew Phillips to answer back less than a minute later. Nick DeSimone and Jakob Pelletier pick up the helpers on the opening Stockton goal. 

Glenn Gawdin kept his momentum going from Sunday’s game and scored 50 seconds later to put the Heat ahead 2-1. 

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The Reign put up one more goal just past the midway mark in the first and the opening 20 finished tied up at two. In the second, Luke Philp, who has been quietly consistent for the Heat this season, netted his sixth of the season and Andy Welinski and Colton Poolman get the assists. 

The third period is really where the game got out of hand. The Reign play a quick game and they have a very strong forecheck that will catch you sleeping if you are not ready for it. They beat the Stockton defence over and over again leaving Werner pretty much hung out to dry. 

Werner was able to stop 21/26 Reign shots but in the third period, three out of their four shots beat the Heat netminder. That makes things a little harder to bounce back from. By 8:31 into the third period, the Reign were up 5-3 and there wasn’t much left for the Heat to bring a comeback together in time. 

A Look at the standings

With this loss, the Utica Comets remain the only undefeated team in the league. They have yet to even lose in overtime or a shootout. They rightfully sit at the top of the league with a 13-0-0-0 record. The Heat, on the other hand, did not make any change to their place at second in the league even with this loss.

They still top the Pacific Division with a 10-1-2-0 record and sit at second in the AHL with their .846 winning percentage. Even a split with the Reign was not enough to shake up the standings. However, the Reign might stay close to the Heat going forward and will be worth keeping an eye on going forward. In league standings, the Heat are in second and the Reign are right behind them in third. In the Pacific the Heat are first and the Reign are second in the Division.

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The last undefeated player

Because Adam Werner was between the pipes in this game, this leaves one Heat player with still an undefeated record on his stat line and that is Dustin Wolf. As this streak dies, the Wolf undefeated in regulation streak is the next thing to get excited about. He is 6-0-2 on the season at this point and unless something strange happens, he will be playing at least one more game this week.

Wolf has yet to lose a game in regulation since his professional debut on February 21, 2021. Definitely not a shabby stat to recognize. Especially out of a first-string goaltender. 

Looking ahead

The Heat are set to play two more road games this week as they will be hosted by the Colorado Eagles on Friday and Saturday for another back to back series. Their last match-up against the Eagles resulted in a 6-3 win on home ice in October. Game times will be at 7:05 p.m. MT on Friday and 3:05 p.m. MT on Saturday.