Photo credit: @sjbarracuda
By Marko Ukalovic
It didn’t take long for the San Jose Barracuda to get the bad taste of San Diego out of their mouth. Less than 24 hours after their shootout loss to the Gulls, San Jose scored three unanswered goals to start the game in route to a 5-2 victory over the Ontario Reign on Sunday evening at Citizens Business Bank Arena.
Nick DeSimone drew first blood for San Jose (16-3-1-3) when he collected the puck at the blue line, skated in toward the net from the left-wing and snapped a wrist shot past Reign goalie Peter Budaj (3-5-2) for his fifth goal of the season at the 8:51 mark of the first period. Alex True and Jon Martin received assists.
Martin gave the Cuda a 2-0 lead at the 13:00 mark when he was able to spun a wrist shot from distance off the crossbar into the back of the net for his second goal of the season. Zach Frye and True received assists.
San Jose outshot Ontario 11-8 in the first period as Cuda goalie Josef Korenar (10-1-1) wasn’t tested much in the opening frame.
In the second period, San Jose scored its third unanswered goal on the power play. Jacob Middleton fed a pass over to True in the slot, who beat a diving Budaj, who ended up on his stomach, into the back of the net for his ninth goal of the season at the 3:25 mark. Kyle Wood picked up the secondary assist.
Ontario would make things interesting as they scored the next two goals to close the gap to a one-goal deficit. First, Kyle Clauge was able to take advantage of a failed clearing attempt by San Jose as he shoveled in a loose puck from atop the crease past Korenar for his second goal of the season at the 14:40 mark. Then Matt Moulson fired a shot past Korenar from between the faceoff circles for his eighth goal of the season with just 18 seconds left in the middle frame.
Dylan Gambrell gave the Cuda an insurance goal at the beginning of the third period. He batted an airborne puck out of mid-air past Budaj for his sixth goal of the season at the 1:02 mark. Thomas Gregoire and DeSimone received assists.
Francis Perron added to the party and closed out the scoring when True, on his way to a career-high, four-point night, found Perron open in the low slot and he buried the puck past Budaj for his 11th goal of the season at the 9:12 mark.
Korenar finished the game, making 24 saves on 26 shots for his 10th victory of the season. Budaj suffered the loss, making 33 saves on 38 shots.
GAMES NOTES: San Jose was 1/5 on the power play. Ontario was 0/2.
Jeffery Truchon-Viel and Jamie Devane exchanged fisticuffs with each other late in the third period as the Reign’s frustrations had boiled over at that point.
The announce attendance was 7,771.
UP NEXT: The Barracuda conclude their three-game road trip with a stop back down to San Diego to take on the Gulls on Wednesday at 7:00 pm at Pachanga Arena.