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San Jose, Calif. - The San Jose Barracuda (8-6-0-2) allowed three first period goals and couldn't recover after their slow start, falling 4-0 to the Stockton Heat (13-5-1-1) on Thursday night at SAP Center.
Stockton's win was its first in team history in San Jose after going 0-5-1 in 2015-16.
The Heat came out white-hot in the first period, netting three goals on 17 shots. Austin Carroll (1) began the scoring at 3:34 with a quick wrister from the right circle past Mantas Armalis's blocker. At 12:29, Alex Gallant and Mike Angelidis dropped the gloves at center ice. Angelidis three the first few punches after Gallant lost his balance but the Barracuda tough guy got to his feet and returned a quick combo to drop Angelidis to the ice. The fight failed to spark any momentum for San Jose, and after Armalis had lost track of a loose puck in his pads, Mark Jankowski (4) cleaned it up and made it 2-0 Heat at 15:43. Hunter Smith (2) capped off the three-goal first by whistling a quick shot inside the far-left post as he streaked down the right wing at 16:28.
In the second, Troy Grosenick came into the game in relief and stopped the bleeding by making nine saves, but San Jose failed to cut into Stockton's advantage.
In the final 20 minutes, San Jose couldn't find the offense and Hunter Shinkaruk (5) popped in an empty netter to seal the 4-0 win.
Armalis suffered (5-2-2) the loss working just 20 minutes and allowing three goals on 17 shots. On the other end, Jon Gillies (7-2-2) was perfect making 31 saves to earn his third shutout of his AHL career and his first of 2016-17.
Troy Grosenick did not allow a goal and made 23 saves in his first game since suffering a lower body injury on November 22 at Bakersfield.
1. Jon Gillies (STK)
2. Mark Jankowski (STK)
3. Hunter Smith (STK)
The San Diego Gulls make their first visit of the season to SAP Center on Saturday (1:15 p.m.) and Sunday (3:00 p.m.). San Jose is 0-1-0-1 against Gulls in two games this season against San Diego. Tickets are still available and can be purchased at SJBarracuda.com/tickets or by calling 408.999.5757.