ONTARIO, Calif. – The Ontario Reign (43-19-3-4), four-time Pacific Division Champions and proud affiliate of the NHL’s Los Angeles Kings and Winnipeg Jets, saw their comeback bid fall short, as they fell 4-2 to the Stockton Thunder (32-30-1-6) before a crowd of 9,003 at Citizens Business Bank Arena on Sunday afternoon.
Stockton got on the board early in the first period with two goals in a span of 55 seconds. The Thunder struck first with a goal from Jeremy Langlois at 3:35, with Andrew Clark assisting. Matt Mangene gave Stockton a 2-0 at 4:30, with Adam Brace and Corey Trivino receiving the assists. A turnover in the Reign zone would lead to Joe Diamond burying a one-timer feed from James Henry at 17:17, and Lee Baldwin getting the secondary assist, extending the lead to three goals.
In the second, the Thunder made it 4-0 with a power-play goal at 13:23, as Ryan Constant blasted a shot from the point over goaltender J.P. Anderson, with Langlois and Clark assisting.
The Reign finally got on the board later in the frame, during another Stockton man advantage, as Cody Sol stripped an attacking forward of the puck, and pushed it along to forward Matt White. White carried the puck up the ice and beat Thunder netminder Parker Milner blocker side with a backhand shot at 14:44 for his 22nd goal of the season.
In the third, Ontario cut the deficit to two at 13:12 when Lane Scheidl jammed the puck through the pads of Milner following Sacha Guimond’s point shot.
Despite outshooting the Thunder 17-6 in the final period, and with Anderson pulled for an extra attacker in the waning moments of regulation, the Reign could not close the gap.
Anderson took the loss with 18 stops; Milner earned the win making 34 saves.