Jon Rheault recorded a goal and an assist, Tony Voce scored a power-play goal and Curtis Darling — playing his third game in as many days — recorded a 28-save shutout.
A physical game, and Jack Bauer himself — Kiefer Sutherland — was in the building. No terrorist attacks, though. More details in tomorrow’s editions.
Tony Voce, Jon Rheault, Dwight King and Robert Pearce scored goals, and Reign goalie Curtis Darling outshone former Reign goalie John Murray, stopping 33 of 36 in his second start in as many nights.
Said Karl Taylor, “we gutted it out.”
“We weren’t perfect,” the coach said. “That was a hard game for us to win. Every time we got a two-goal lead, (Victoria) pushed back. They’re trying really hard to get off this slide. We were very fortunate. I never felt safe. We were very happy to get that win and get out of Dodge.”
John Murray, who appeared in 24 games for the Reign last season, said that he will be the starting goaltender tonight for the Victoria Salmon Kings at Citizens Business Bank Arena.
“What I think is going to be worse than the crowd is if I go behind the net to play a puck, and somebody says, like Geoff Walker calls for the puck, I’m going to instinctively go to pass it to him,” Murray said. “I think that might be the difference. They know my weak spots. I know where they’re shooting. It’s going to be a crapshoot.”
The Reign snapped a two-game losing streak behind goals from Andrew Martens, Tony Voce, Peter Lenes and newcomer Jon Landry. Goaltender Curtis Darling stopped 24 of 25 shots in his first start since Oct. 30.
“I think we played hard again, and we played smart,” coach Karl Taylor said. “We buried our chances for the most part, which was a difference from Wednesday. We’d like to have more shots, but we’ll take the win. Right now we’re trying to climb a little bit. WE like the way our team is playing, and the direction we’re heading. We feel as a team that we got rewarded today based on Wednesday’s effort, Sunday’s effort. We finally got a little fruit for our labor. It’s a small step forward, but we’ve got to get ready for tomorrow.”
Just a reminder that the Inland Empire’s incarnation of California Hockey Day — a free day for local youth to try ice hockey — will be held tomorrow at Ice Town, located at 10540 Magnolia Ave in Riverside.
Kids ages 4 to 9 are invited to a free clinic from 12 to 1:30 p.m. All kids who register will get a free ticket to the Reign game on Saturday night (7 p.m.) against the Victoria Salmon Kings.
Kyle Calder, a Los Angeles King last season, has reported for duty with the ECHL’s Bakersfield Condors. The Bakersfield Californian has the story, here’s the relevant excerpt:
“They (the Ducks) wanted me to come here and be around their younger guys,” Calder, 30, said of how he wound up in Bakersfield, two steps below the NHL in a normal season, “and I think it’s a good situation. It’s a good atmosphere around here.”
Obviously, Calder would prefer to be playing for the Ducks, and that may well happen down the road.
“The No. 1 thing is coming down here, getting in shape and make sure I’m game ready if anything happens,” Calder said. “I want to come to work, work hard and see what happens.”
First off, I realize I left an important detail out of the game story that ran in print: Jon Landry isn’t here yet. I have on good word that he’s expected to arrive before Friday’s game against Victoria, and will try to score an interview with him prior to the game, if possible.
Because of the Adam Henrich-for-Landry trade, I didn’t have room for the usual depth of game details. Here they are …
Geoff Walker scored in his first game back with the Reign, but Jordan Bendfield’s deep slapshot past a stickless Mike Zacharias with 52.3 seconds left gave the Thunder a 3-2 win.
Jon Rheault scored with 9:10 left in the third period to tie the game at 2. He nearly had another in the first period, when he hit the post on a short-handed 1-on-1 rush against Stockton goaltender Bryan Pitton.
The Reign have traded forward Adam Henrich to the Cincinnati Cyclones for defenseman Jon Landry.
Landry, 25, began the season with the American Hockey League’s Rochester Americans, but appeared in just one game before he was released. In six games for Cincinnati, Landry collected one assist and 13 penalty minutes.
If you’ve ever found yourself shouting this phrase at a hockey game, it’s either because:
a) You’re blind and hard of hearing, or
b) It’s because there’s little more than one minute left in the period, and you know the announcer is going to announce “there’s one minute left in the period!” CBBA’s Reign announcer, Jeff Pope does a very diligent job of this, and for acknolwedging the crowd’s “thank you” in response.
I mention this because longtime Edmonton Journal hockey writer Jim Matheson addresses this phrase’s very existence in the game here. Scroll down a bit for his answer to a reader’s question.