Game 6: Gallimore and Noebels help Birds to third straight victory

Oct 15, 2011, 9:51 PM | Updated: Oct 16, 2011, 12:56 pm

(3-3) Seattle Thunderbirds 4, (7-2) Saskatoon Blades 2

“Penalty kills are a huge momentum swing. Even more than power play goals. You really come together as a team when you kill that many penalties in a row.”… Burke Gallimore

“When you get results it’s easy to believe in the system. They know when they need to get better. They are holding each other accountable on the bench. It’s nice winning one goal games as well.”…Steve Konowalchuk

KENT–Burke Gallimore and Marcel Noebels each net two and Calvin Pickard makes 43 saves as the Birds defeat the Saskatoon Blades for their third win in a row.

The Blades strike first (Michael Burns..fourth of season) at 10:49 of the first period to take a 1-0 lead.

With Saskatoon controlling most of the play a quick wrister from just outside the face off circle by Gallimore (1) got past Andrey Makarov (6-1)to tie the game 1-1 at 18:22. The assist went to Shea Theodore.

The Birds may have been a bit fortunate to end the first period tied. They had several turnovers at the blue line allowing the Blades to generate some offense. However a strong finish by Seattle helped their cause. The Blades out shot the Birds 14-10 in the period.

The Birds get into big time penalty trouble in the second period (Tyler Alos/Tripping, Theodore/Cross Checking, Justin Hickman/ Delay of Game, Hickman/Tripping) and their PK comes up big by killing all four.

Noebels (3) scores a breakaway goal off a beautiful pass from Kyle Verdino to give the Birds a 2-1 lead at 17:07. Assists go to Verdino and Hickman.

The Birds finally get a power play chance late in the period (Kyle Schmidt/Tripping).

Seattle takes a 2-1 lead into the third period. Shots were 10-7 in favor of Saskatoon.

The Birds take a 3-1 lead on a power play goal (Gallimore..second of season and game) after a Saskatoon penalty (Jesse Paradis/High Sticking). Time of the goal was 2:01 and the assists went to Dave Sutter and Luke Lockhart.

A cross up behind the net cost the Birds when Burns (5..second of game)knocked in an easy goal past Pickard (3-3) at 10:36 to cut the Seattle lead to 3-2.

The Blades pulled their goalie twice. Once on a late power play chance and then with 1:36 left but to no avail as Noebels (4…second of game) gets the empty netter to give the Birds a 4-2 victory.

Quotes of the game:

Burke Gallimore on his two goal effort..

“Anytime you start slowly like I did it’s good to get that first one and get that monkey off your back. It’s a long year, I’ve scored most of my career. You keep playing hard, the goals are gonna come.”

On the penalty kill…

“Penalty kills are a huge momentum swing. Even more than power play goals. You really come together as a team when you kill that many penalties in a row.”

Head Coach Steve Konowalchuk on winning close games..

“Winning builds confidence, winning tight games builds confidence. We’ve been winning the tight ones, now we need to get better to where we win the game 3-1 instead of making it close at the end.”

On Calvin Pickard..

“He’s solid. We’ve still got to get better in front of him and make his work load lighter every game.”

On the late surge by Saskatoon…

“We relaxed a bit after getting that two goal lead. That’s where a lot of their shots came from. We gotta learn that it’s a 60 minute game. Hopefully we learn from that.”

On the Birds getting contributions from different guys every night..

“A lot of guys are chipping in, some guys are excited because they are getting more ice time than they might have expected because they are playing well. If they keep playing that way they are going to keep getting it.”

 

Plus side:

Birds go a perfect 6 for 6 on the penalty kill including killing off four straight to begin the second period.

– The power play strikes again going 1 for 3. That’s five pp goals during the three game winning streak.

– Gallimore gets on the board with two goals. Noebels also has two goals and now leads the team with four.

– Seattle beats a team in Saskatoon that was a league best 7-1 coming into the game including a four game winning streak.

Minus side:

The Birds are out shot 45-26 (21-9 in the third period)

– Many of those shots come in the latter part of the third period where the Birds seemed to let up a bit, making things interesting.

– Seattle took four penalties in a row in the second period something they might want to avoid in their next game against Brandon, a team that is sporting a power play near 40 percent.

Game Notes:

– D Jared Hauf and D Austin Frank were healthy scratches.

D Erik Fleming, D Evan Wardley and F Colin Jacobs remain out with injuries.

– Seattle improves to 2-2 at home.

D Jacob Doty received a 10 minute misconduct at the end of the second period.

MyNorthwest.com three stars:

First star: Burke Gallimore (two goals)

Second star: Calvin Pickard (43/45 saves)

Third star: Michael Burns (two goals)

The Thunderbirds take on the Brandon Wheat Kings on Tuesday night at the ShoWare Center at 7 pm. The game can be heard live at MyNorthwest.com.

Game report can be seen at the WHL website

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Game 6: Gallimore and Noebels help Birds to third straight victory