The Adirondack Thunder swept their preseason series vs. the Reading Royals as they won by a score of 4-1 on Friday Night and 3-1 on Saturday Night. This is huge for the Thunder as they officially begin the Pete MacArthur on Saturday Night on the road vs. the Worcester Railers. There are a few takeaways from the two preseason games, so let’s recap and look at what we found out about the Adirondack Thunder this past weekend.
One of the biggest things mentioned throughout training camp was the defense, which was on display early as the Royals didn’t get their first shot in until halfway through the first period. The Thunder would open up the scoring late in the first period as Shane Harper won a faceoff and made a soft pass to Noah Corson, who would open up the scoring for the Thunder. Corson, in his first game with the Thunder, played a very physical game, and it’s easy to see why he was second in goals and first in PIMS with the Norfolk Admirals last season, “I think I started well in the first period with a goal” said Corson. The special teams weren’t exactly hitting the mark tonight as the Royals took advantage of their third PP chance of the night, the Royals would take advantage to tie up the game at one as Shane Sellar would put home his own rebound at the 5:38 mark of the first period, but it would end up being the only goal of the night for Reading. Adirondack would respond with an almost identical goal as their first one, as Garrett Van Whye would feed Vladislav Mikhalchuk, who would put one past Justin Kapelmaster for what would end up being the game-winning goal. Sebastian Vidmar and Ryan Smith would add empty net goals for the Thunder.
Adirondack would end up giving the Royals seven chances on the PP, allowing them to score on only one of them. The Thunder would get four chances with the man advantage. Only one of those chances looked promising, “I mean, it happens, it’s a preseason game the guys are excited, I think we did a good job on the penalty kill, for the most part, we have to learn to use our skills so we can use those skills more on the ice than in the box as often, we’ll touch on it tomorrow, but I’m happy with their effort.”
Mareks Mitens and Isaac Polter split time in goal for the Thunder tonight as Mitens would start the game, stopping 12 out of the 13 shots he faced. Still, it would be Isaac Polter who would be on display tonight as he stopped all 16 shots he faced tonight, “It feels really nice to get a couple of games under my belt, one in Utica and now one, it feels nice getting my feet wet into professional hockey a little bit” said Polter.
Once again, the goaltending would be displayed as Jake Theut and Isaac Polter would handle the goaltending for Adirondack. The Thunder would get off to a slow start allowing the first seven shots to the Royals, and would also have to kill off 11 seconds of 5 on 3 in the opening frame, but despite being outshot 12-5, it would be scoreless after the opening 20. Adirondack would get on the board early in the second as Billy Jerry would feed Ryan DaSilva, who found the back of the net on the powerplay for the Thunder. Ivan Chukarov would end up doubling the lead for the Thunder with a bomb from the point on the powerplay. However, the Royals wouldn’t go away easy as Kamerin Nault would score on the PP to make it a one-goal game. Adirondack would give the Royals a golden chance as they would take a penalty with 3:12 left in the third, and Reading would pull Nolan Maier with 2:18 left for the extra attacker. During the PP, the Royals would hit both posts before Billy Jerry would fire one down the ice that would find the back of the net to solidify Adirondack’s 3-1 victory.
What We Learned
- The goaltending is very solid, as all three goaltenders played during the three-game stretch. Mareks Mitens stopped 12 out of the 13 shots he faced on Friday Night, and Isaac Poulter stopped 16 shots in relief of Mitens.
- Penalty Kill looks solid as the Thunder killed 11 of the 12 penalties they committed. However, the PP was pretty decent, especially on Saturday Night, as they went 2/5 with the man advantage.
- Rex Moe was the most impressive of the PTOs throughout the two games and will give Pete MacArthur some tough decisions.
- Jeff Taylor had an “A” on his chest during Saturday’s game, and though the team hasn’t announced it, he will likely be one of the assistants for the Thunder this season.