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San Diego, Ca - The San Jose Barracuda (19-7-1-3) entered Friday looking to end a three-game skid against the San Diego Gulls (16-11-1-3), but a red-hot Gulls team, winners of four in a row, proved too much as San Jose fell 4-3 at the Pechanga Arena. The victory for San Diego was their fifth consecutive, fifth in a row at home and the 10th game in which they've earned a point.
In the first, Vincent Praplan (4) made it three goals in two games and opened up the scoring as Dylan Gambrell crossed a pass to the Swiss forward from just above the goal line and Praplan scooped the rolling puck under the bar from close range at 16:28. San Jose looked bound for a 1-0 lead heading into the intermission, but an offensive-zone turnover by San Jose led to a late San Diego odd-man rush and Troy Terry (13) snapped in a shot from just below the center right-hash with 11 seconds remaining in the frame.
In the second, the Gulls would pot the only tally of the period when Keaton Thompson's d-zone pass was directed up ice by Chase De Leo in the neutral zone to Adam Cracknell (4) and Cracknell streaked up the left wing before snapping in a shot from just inside the left circle, giving SD the 2-1 lead at 14:42.
A minute and 32 seconds into the third, Joe Blandisi found Terry (14) uncovered in front of the net and the rookie forward would move across the face of Josef Korenar before sneaking the puck through the five-hole of San Jose's netminder, giving San Diego a crucial two-goal lead. At 13:16, nine seconds into its third power play, Gambrell (9) wired a left-point blast off the post and in, inching the Barracuda back within one. Blandisi (7) would all but put the game out of reach as he backhanded a blocked point shot in from the low slot at 16:21. Jon Martin (5) scored with a second remaining but the Barracuda would fall 4-3.
In the loss, Korenar's (13-2-1) seven-game winning streak came to a conclusion after allowing four goals on 22 shots, while Kevin Boyle (12-5-0) extended his winning streak to seven by making 27 saves on 30 shots.
San Jose wraps up its road trip in Ontario on Saturday, kicking off three-straight games against the Los Angeles Kings affiliate. The Barracuda return to SAP Center on Wednesday, January 9th for another edition of five-dollar Wednesday walk-up, where fans can walk up to the box office and find five-dollar tickets for the contest.