Special teams key Silver Knights 4-2 victory over Barracuda, sweep series

The San Jose Barracuda battling it out with the Henderson Silver Knights in game 2 of the Pacific Division Finals at Orleans Arena in Las Vegas on Sun May 23, 2021 (@sjbarracuda photo)

by Marko Ukalovic

LAS VEGAS, Nev.–The Henderson Silver Knights scored three goals off of special teams en route to defeat the San Jose Barracuda 4-2 on Sunday afternoon at Orleans Arena.

Henderson swept the best of three series and now will wait to host the winner of the San Diego Gulls-Bakersfield Condors semifinal series in the Pacific Division Finals. The winner of that series receives the John D. Chick trophy. San Jose ends their season having lost their last five games against the Silver Knights.

San Jose drew first blood on the first shot of the game just 40 seconds into the first period. Jacob Middleton threw a puck up to the neutral zone that sprung a two-on-one rush with Jake McGrew and Jayden Halbgewachs. McGrew skated down the left slot and snapped home a wrist shot past Silver Knights goalie Logan Thompson for his second goal of the playoffs.

Ivan Chekhovic was injured during a collision with a Brayden Pachal inside the Silver Knights zone with 10:45 left in the first period. Pachal was given a five-minute major for interference. It appeared Pachal delivered a knee-on-knee hit to Chekhovich. Kyle Topping received a penalty for roughing Pachal after the whistle was blown.

Chekhovic didn not return to the game.

Henderson answered back with a short-handed goal while killing the major penalty to Pachal. Gage Quinney carried the puck out its own zone and skated down the right wing where he used Robby Russo as a screen as he fired a wrist shot that beat ‘Cuda goalie Josef Korenar to the far side for his first goal of the playoffs at the 12:26 mark. Kaedan Korczak received the only assist on the play.

Quinney had three short-handed goals during the regular season.

Henderson gained its first lead of the game early in the second period. Paul Cotter sent a pass up to center ice over to Tomas Jurco from inside his own zone. Jurco skated in made a move and beat Korenar with a wrist shot for his first goal of the playoffs at the 1:59 mark.

The Silver Knights went up 3-1 less than three minutes later with its second short-handed goal of the game. A turnover in the neutral zone led to a two-on-one opportunity led by Danny O’Regan. The ‘Cuda killer haunted his old team once again as his wrist show beat Korenar for his first goal of the playoffs at the 4:47 mark.

San Jose made up for the shortie the gave up with a power play goal late on the man advantage. A shot from the left slot from Middleton was saved by Thompson but the rebound bounced around the crease. Maxim Letunov crashed the net and cleaned up the rebound with a backhander past Thompson for his second goal of the playoffs at the 6:24 mark.

The Silver Knights regained its two-goal lead with a power play goal of its own halfway through the second period. Ryan Murphy found O’Regan along the right slot. O’Regan’s initial shot was blocked but he followed up his own shot and put home the rebound past Korenar for his second goal of the game at the 9:06 mark.

The third period went scoreless as Henderson out shot San Jose nine to eight.

Thompson finished the game stopping 30 of the 32 shots he faced to earn the victory. Korenar suffered his second straight loss as he made 24 saves on 28 shots.

GAME NOTES: San Jose was 1-for-5 on the power play. Henderson was 1-for-4.

The Three Stars of the Game were: 1) O’Regan 2) Jurco 3) Quinney

San Jose Barracuda podcast with Marko Ukalovic: Knights present potent offense and defensive goalie Thompson in net

The San Jose Barracuda will be battling with everything on the line in game 2 down 1-0 to the Henderson Golden Knights in the AHL Pacific Division semifinals at the Orleans Arena in Las Vegas (photo from @sjbarracuda)

On the Barracuda podcast with Marko:

#1 The Henderson Silver Knights proving to be the successful AHL minor league affiliate of the Vegas Golden Knights proved why they and their parent club is so successful with a three goal 4-1 convincing win over the San Jose Barracuda on Friday night at Orleans Arena in Las Vegas.

#2 Marko talk about Barracuda goaltender Josef Korenar and who face 30 shots and allowed two goals to the Knights in game one of this playoff round a tough night for Korenar.

#3 The Knights Logan Thompson stopped 22 of 23 shots allowing the Barracuda’s Jayden Halbgewachs the only San Jose goal for the night.

#4 Look out for the Knights Jack Dugan who scored a hat trick scoring two empty netters talk about taking advantage of a short handed situation.

#5 Barracuda and Knights square off again Sunday night at Orleans Arena the Knights are holding the home ice advantage and are coming off a three goal win against from game 1 and after Dugan’s hat trick this team has a strong offense. Can Cuda head coach Roy Sommer and the Barracuda even up this series?

Join Marko for the Barracuda podcast Saturday nights at http://www.sportsradioservice.com

Silver Knights take down Barracuda 4-1 in semifinal opener

The Henderson Silver Knights center Jake Leschyshyn (39) and the San Jose Barracuda defenceman Brinson Pasichnuk (50) scramble for the puck on open ice during game 1 of the Pacific Division Semifinals on Fri May 21, 2021 at Orleans Arena in Las Vegas (@sjbarracuda photo)

by Marko Ukalovic

LAS VEGAS, Nev.–The Henderson Silver Knights opened their first ever playoff game with a 4-1 victory over the San Jose Barracuda in game one of the Pacific Division Semifinals on Friday evening at Orleans Arena.

Henderson went up 1-0 in the best of three Pacific Division semifinals series. The Barracuda kept the game close throughout the majority of the game until the Silver Knights put the game away with a couple of empty net goals.

The Silver Knights drew first blood on an even strength goal in the first period. A clearing attempt by ‘Cuda goalie Josef Korenar went out of the reach of Jacob Middleton. Brayden Pachal collected the puck along the right boards and wristed a shot towards the net where Jack Dugan redirected past Korenar for his first goal of the playoffs at the 8:20 mark.

San Jose answered back late in the opening 20 minutes. Jake McGrew fired in a shot from the right wing and Jayden Halbgewachs, who was camped out in front of the crease, tipped home the puck past Silver Knights goalie Logan Thompson for his first goal of the playoffs at the 15:02 mark.

The Barracuda out shot the Silver Knights 11-9 in the first period.

Henderson regained the lead halfway through the second period. Maxim Marushev led a two-on-one odd man rush with Pavel Dorofeyev. Marushev threaded a pass over to Dorofeyev who skated in and slipped a bandhander through the five-hole of Korenar for his first goal of the playoffs at the 10:19 mark.

Dorofeyev scored four of his nine goals during the regular season against San Jose.

Henderson out shot San Jose 14-7 in the middle frame.

San Jose had a chance to score the equalizer with a power play halfway through the third period but weren’t able to capitalize on its only chance with the man advantage.

Dugan iced the game with his two empty net goals at the end of the game. His first empty netter (and second of the game) came at the 18:32 mark. Then he completed the hat trick with his second empty netter with 19 seconds left.

Thompson finished the game with 22 shots on 23 shots to earn the victory. Korenar made 30 saves on 32 shots in the losing effort.

GAME NOTES: San Jose went 0-for-1 on the power play. Henderson was 0-for-3.

The Three Stars of the Game were: 1) Dorofeyev 2) Dugan 3) Thompson

UP NEXT: Game 2 is slated for Sunday 5/23 at 1:00pm at Orleans Arena.

Barracuda shoot down Eagles 5-1, advance to Pacific Division semi-finals

The San Jose Barracuda right winger Scott Reedy (54) does some fancy puck handling against the Colorado Eagles at FivePoint Arena in Irvine the site of the Pacific Division Tournament on Wed May 19, 2021 (@sjbarracuda photo)

by Marko Ukalovic

IRVINE, Calif–The San Jose Barracuda scored three unanswered goals en route to a 5-1 victory over the Colorado Eagles in the third play in game of the Pacific Division tournament on Wednesday evening at FivePoint Arena.

San Jose, winning the fourth seed, advances to the Pacific Division semi-final matchup with the top-seeded Henderson Silver Knights in a best of three series starting on Friday.

This was the first and only meeting between the two teams as they did not play against each other in the abbreviated 2021 season.

San Jose drew first blood late in the first period with an even strength goal. Evan Weinger led a two-on-one odd man rush with Maxim Letunov along the right boards. Weinger made a cross rink pass to Letunov who buried a one-timer past Eagles goalie Justus Annunen on the far side for his first goal of the playoffs at the 14:10 mark.

The Barracuda outshot the Eagles 13-12 after the opening 20 minutes.

The ‘Cuda doubled its lead halfway through the second period. Steenn Pasichnuk fed a pass back out to the point where Zachary Gallant checked his options before blasting a slapshot to the far side just under the crossbar for his first goal of the playoffs at the 9:25 mark.

San Jose scored its third unanswered goal when Ryan Merkley made a move around Mike Vecchione at the right point, skated in to the slot and fired a shot that caromed out to the middle where Kristoff Hrabik fired a wrist shot from the high slot through the five-hole of Annunen for his first goal of the playoff at the 12:36 mark.

It was Hrabik’s first career AHL goal. He was recalled up from the Orlando Solar Bears in his debut for the ‘Cuda.

Colorado cut into San Jose’s lead on the power play late in the middle frame. Vecchione sent in a shot from the left point that ‘Cuda goalie Josef Korenar kicked out to the right. Sampo Ranta needed two chances to bury the puck into the back of the net for his first goal of the playoffs at the 17:47 mark.

The Eagles outshot the Barracuda 14-12 in the second period.

San Jose were awarded a five-minute power play in the first 44 seconds of the third period when Miikka Salomaki was given a five-minute major penalty for boarding on Jacob Middelton. Salomaki pushed Middleton into the right boards as he was in a vulnerable position.

Colorado was able to keep San Jose from adding to their lead as they killed the major penalty to Salomaki.

The ‘Cuda put the game away late in the third period with two empty net goals. First, Nicolas Meloche scored his first of the playoffs at the 17:20 mark. Then Hrabik scored his second of the game with his empty netter at the 18:58 mark.

Korenar finished the game stopping 32 of the 33 shots he faced in earning his second straight play in game win. Annunen made 30 saves on 33 shots in the losing effort.

GAME NOTES: San Jose went 0-for-2 on the power play. Colorado was 1-for-2.

UP NEXT: The Barracuda begin its best of three series with the Silver Knights on Friday 5/21 at 7:00pm at Orleans Arena.

San Jose Barracuda podcast with Marko Ukalovic: Barracuda prepare for elimination game Tuesday

The San Jose Barracuda and Henderson Silver Knights battled on Tue May 11, 2021 at Orleans Arena in Las Vegas for the final regular season game (@sjbarracuda photo)

On the Barracuda podcast with Marko:

#1 The San Jose Barracuda (15-15-4-2) closed out their regular season dropping a two goal game to the Henderson Silver Knights (24-12-0-0) 3-1 last Tuesday night at the Orleans Arena

#2 Barracuda goalie Zach Sawchenko had a tough loss allowing two goals and facing 29 shots in the loss

#3 The Barracuda’s Evan Weinger scored San Jose’s only goal with just 20 seconds left in the second period.

#4 The Barracuda’s Maxim Letunov got an assist on Tuesday and now has points in three consecutive games.

#5 The Barracuda are in a single elimination play in game to determine who gets the fourth seed on May 18 at Irvine

Join Marko for the Barracuda podcasts Saturdays at http://www.sportsradioservice.com

Barracuda conclude regular season with 3-1 loss to Silver Knights

by Marko Ukalovic

LAS VEGAS, Nev–The Henderson Silver Knights defeated the San Jose Barracuda 3-1 in the ‘Cuda’s regular season finale on Tuesday evening at Orleans Arena.

San Jose finished the regular season on a four-game losing streak as they whimper into the play in-game of the Pacific Division playoffs on May 18th. Henderson have won three games in a row and finish the regular season with three games against the Bakersfield Condors.

Henderson (24-12-0-0) drew first blood late in the first period. Paul Cotter sent a shot in on ‘Cuda goalie Zachary Sawchenko that was kicked out to the left slot and Ben Jones skated in and cleaned up the rebound beating Sawchenko with a wrist shot for his seventh goal of the season at the 13:32 mark.

Jones snapped an 11-game goal less draught.

Chaz Reddekopp and Zach Hayes danced the tango at the 14:17 mark in a spirited battle at center ice.

San Jose (15-15-4-2) out shot Henderson 17-9, but were left frustrated heading into the first intermission as Silver Knights goalie Logan Thompson was perfect in the opening 20 minutes.

Henderson doubled its lead on the power play early in the second period. Gage Quinney found ‘Cuda killer Dann O’Regan in the right slot and his shot ricochet off the skate of Jacob Megna through the five-hole of Sawchenko for O’Regan’s team leading 14th goal of the season at the 3:47 mark.

O’Regan, whose goal proved to be the game winner, scored six goals and 10 points against his former team this season.

San Jose finally solved the riddle known as Thompson late in the middle frame. Brandon Coe sent a pass down to Maxim Letunov down the right end line. Letunov quickly spun around and centered a pass to the back post where Evan Weinger slammed home a one-timer past the five-hole of Thompson for his fourth goal of the season at the 19:40 mark.

Weinger snapped a five-game goal less draught.

The Barracuda had a chance to tie the game up late in the third period when they had a five-on-three power play opportunity with 3:23 left in the third period. However, they weren’t able to generate any quality scoring chances as the Silver Knights ended the threat by killing off both penalites.

Jake Leschyshyn sealed the deal for Henderson with an empty net goal at the 19:20 mark. The 2017 second round draft pick of the Vegas Golden Knights scored his fifth goal of the season.

Thompson finished the game stopping 26 of the 27 shots he faced to earn his 15th win of the season and fourth versus the ‘Cuda this season. Sawchenko (1-3) made 27 saves on 29 shots in the losing effort.

GAME NOTES: San Jose was 0-for-4 on the power play. Henderson went 1-for-3.

The Barracuda have given up a power play goal in seven straight games and 11 out of its last 12.

Mason Primeau received the secondary assist on Jones’ goal in the first period. Mason is the son of former San Jose Sharks player Wayne Primeau, who played for the Sharks from 2003-2006.

San Jose finished the season with a 5-9-3 record on the road.

The announced attendance was 2,021.

The Three Stars of the Game were: 1) O’Regan 2) Jones 3) Thompson

UP NEXT: The Barracuda will play in the play-in game on Tuesday 5/18. Team and time TBD.

Silver Knights take down Barracuda 5-3

by Marko Ukalovic

LAS VEGAS, Nev—Pavel Dorofeyev scored two goals for the Henderson Silver Knights as they defeated the San Jose Barracuda 5-3 on Saturday afternoon at T-Mobile Arena.

San Jose have lost three games in a row and continue to sit in fourth place in the Pacific Division. Henderson have won two in a row and sit atop of the Pacific with 46 points.

San Jose (15-14-4-2) drew first blood early in the first period with an even strength goal. Nicolas Meloche started a three-on-two odd man rush and fed a pass over to Ozzy Wiesblatt at the Silver Knights blueline. Wiesblatt found Scott Reedy all alone on the right wing and he snapped home a wrist shot past Silver Knights goalie Oscar Dansk to the short side off the post for his fifth goal of the season at the 4:22 mark.

Henderson (23-12-0-0) answered back over two minutes later on the power play. Danny O’Regan picked up the puck behind the net after a battle along the boards. The former San Jose Sharks prospect skated out to the left slot and fired home a wrist shot to the short side of ‘Cuda goalie Zachary Sawchenko for his team leading 13th goal of the season at the 6:30 mark.

O’Regan has tormented his former team all season long with his fifth goal against the Barracuda. He has 12 points in his last eight games.

The Silver Knights gained the lead when Dorofeyev scored his first goal of the game. Zach Hayes sent a shot in from the left point that snuck underneath and behind Zawchenko. Dorofeyev crashed the net and jammed home the rebound for his seventh goal of the season at the 12:37 mark.

Henderson scored its third unanswered goal of the game early in the second period. Ryan Murphy fed a pass over to Dylan Sikura whose shot popped up in the air and went behind Sawchenko. Cody Glass whacked the puck out of the air into the back of the net for his fourth goal of the season at the 4:05 mark.

The Barracuda came back and answered back 95 seconds later. Ryan Merkley sent a shot from the point that was blocked out in front. The rebound leaked out to Maxim Letunov who buried a wrist shot under the arm of Dansk for his 12th goal of the season at the 5:40 mark.

Letunov has scored in back-to-back games and has three goals in his past four games.

Dorofeyev gave the Silver Knights a huge insurance goal early in the third period with his second goal of the game seconds after their power play opportunity had expired. Gage Quinney set up Dorofeyev right in front of the crease and he tapped home the puck past Sawchenko for his eighth goal of the season at the 2:05 mark.

San Jose cut the lead to a one-goal game with a five-on-three power play goal right after Henderson’s fourth goal. Jayden Halbgewachs’ shot rebounded over to Wiesblatt who skated out to the right face off circle, outwaited Dansk and snapped home a wrist shot top-shelf for his second goal of the season at the 4:04 mark.

It was a pair of firsts for the Sharks 2020 first round draft pick. He scored his first power play goal as well as his first multi-point game of his careeer.

The ‘Cuda pulled Sawchenko for an extra attacker with 1:53 left in the third period but Jack Dugan ended their comeback attempt with an empty net goal with 29 seconds remaining for his ninth goal of the season.

Dansk finished the game stopping 27 of the 30 shots he faced, including three consecutive point blank saves while the ‘Cuda were on the five-on-three penalty kill, to earn the victory. Sawchenko made 35 saves on 39 shots in the losing effort.

GAME NOTES: Both San Jose and Henderson went 1-for-5 on the power play.

The Three Stars of the Game were: 1) Dorofeyev 2) Glass 3) Sikura

The announced attendance was 3831.

UP NEXT: The Barracuda conclude the regular season against the Silver Knights on Tuesday 5/11 at 7:00pm at Orleans Arena.

San Jose Barracuda podcast with Marko Ukalovic: Barracuda play last game of season on Tuesday night in Vegas

The San Jose Barracuda Jacob McGrew forward (64) defends against the boards Mon May 3, 2021 against the Bakersfield Condors at Solar4America in San Jose (@sjbarracuda photo)

On the Barracuda podcast with Marko:

#1 The San Jose Barracuda (15-13-4-2) concluded their final home game of the season against the Bakersfield Condors (21-12-0-1) last Monday after winning three straight over the Condors the Barracuda couldn’t hold on for the win losing by two goals 5-3.

#2 Barracuda goaltender Alexi Melnichuk had a rough outing last Monday allowing five goals on 19 Condor shots.

#3 The Condors goalie Stuart Skinner has had some luck he was the AHL CCM goalie of the month of March. He stopped 35 Barracuda shots against and won his 18th game he’s got a bright future whenever he get recalled to the Oilers.

#4 Joel Kellman has been going well for the Barracuda he was the CCM AHL Player of the Week he picked up three points for the Barracuda last Monday and has scored ten points in his last four games.

#5 The Barracuda faced off against the Henderson Silver Knights at 1:00pm today at T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas just get a run down from you on how that game went.

Join Marko for the San Jose Barracuda podcasts each Saturday at http://www.sportsradioservice.com

Silver Knights split series with 4-0 shutout win over Barracuda

Tough game for the San Jose Barracuda taking a one goal loss to the Henderson Silver Knights at SAP Center in San Jose on Sat May 1, 2021 (@sjbarracua photo)

by Marko Ukalovic

SAN JOSE, Calif–Less than 24 hours after giving up seven goals, including a franchise worst five power play goals, the Henderson Silver Knights exacted revenge on the San Jose Barracuda in a 4-0 shutout victory on Saturday evening at SAP Center.

Henderson snapped its two game losing streak as they split the two-game series. With the loss, San Jose had its three-game winning streak also snapped.

It was a complete 180 for the ‘Cuda after setting a few franchise scoring marks the night before against its Pacific Division rival. San Jose matched a franchise low with just 16 shots on net.

Oscar Dansk had a relatively easy night as he stopped all 16 shots he faced to earn his first shutout of the season and seventh of his career.

Henderson (22-12-0-0) drew first blood on a five-on-three power play early in the first period. The Silver Knights only needed 20 second during the two-man advantage to break the seal. Danny O’Regan fed a pass over to Jack Dugan who fired a one-timer top-shelf past ‘Cuda goalie Sam Harvey for his first goal of the period and his seventh of the season at the 4:36 mark.

The Silver Knights doubled its lead five minutes later. Paul Cotter picked up the puck at center ice. He raced in from the left side on a two-on-two rush. Cotter performed a toe-drag before snapping a wrist shot past Harvey, who was screened by Jonas Rondbjerg, for his sixth goal of the season at the 9:30 mark.

Dugan gave the Silver Knights a 3-0 lead late in the period with his second goal of the opening 20 minutes. Brayden Pachal hit Dugan with a home run pass at the blueline. Dugan than skated in on a breakaway and made a fore-hand to backhand move as he slipped the puck past Harvey for his eighth goal of the season at the 14:39 mark.

San Jose (15-12-4-2) was dominated by Henderson on the shot clock 16-6 after the first period.

Henderson scored its fourth unanswered goal late in the second period. Lucan Elvenes found Reid Duke alone at the Barraucuda blueline. Duke raced in all alone and shot a quick wrister through the five-hole of Harvey for his fourth goal of the season at the 14:35 mark.

Duke ended a nine-game goal less draught.

Henderson out shot San Jose 11-5 in the middle frame.

Things became chippy in the scoreless third period as frustration set in for San Jose as the ‘Cuda engaged in three fights. Sasha Chmelevski and Peter DeLiberatore went it at the 3:53 mark. Steen Pasichnuk and Duke danced the tango at the 8:17 mark. Then Brinson Pasichnuk and Jermiane Loewen were both given game misconduct penalties after they scrapped with each other at the 11:13 mark.

Harvey made 35 saves on 39 shots in the losing effort.

GAME NOTES: San Jose was 0-for-4 on the power play. Henderson went 1-for-5.

The Three Stars of the Game were: 1) Dugan 2) O’Regan 3) Ryan Murphy

UP NEXT: The Barracuda close out its regular season home schedule as they host the Bakersfield Condors on Monday 5/3 at 4:00pm at Solar4Amerca Ice.

San Jose Barracuda podcast with Marko Ukalovic: Cuda and Knights keep things on edge in 7-5 thriller

San Jose Barracuda (15-11-4-2) had plenty to celebrate on Fri Apr 30, 2021 at SAP Center in San Jose as they scored five times on the power play and won 7-5 over the Henderson Silver Knights (21-12) (@sjbarracuda photo)

#1 Joel Kellman scored the game winning goal with 31 seconds left in regulation on the power play to give the San Jose Barracuda a 7-5 victory over the Henderson Silver Knights on Friday evening at SAP Center.

#2 The ‘Cuda set a franchise record for the most power play goals in a game with five. 

#3 The Barracuda needed every single goal in a game that went back and fourth in a frantic third period that featured seven combined goals.

#4 San Jose has won three games in a row for the second time this season and continue to occupy fourth place and the final play spot in the Pacific Division.

#5 San Jose and Henderson go back at it again tonight at 5:15pm at SAP Center. Could there be another scoring thriller tonight?

Join Marko for the Barracuda podcasts each Saturday night at http://www.sportsradioservice.com