Gawdin’s two-goal performance and OT win allows the Heat to play another day

The Stockton Heat struggled to get past the Chicago Wolves in their playoff series. With Friday’s game being game four of the seven-game series, Stockton found himself in a really difficult position, trailing 3-0 in the series and one game away from elimination. Thankfully, that wasn’t the case as some late goals and a huge goal in overtime were scored to give the Heat a 4-3 win and survive another day in the Calder Cup playoffs.

what went

The Chicago Wolves were almost perfect when they got the first goal in the regular season and they’re perfect when they got the first goal against the Heat this year. Against the Heat, they opened the game with a power play goal 4:40 for the fourth straight game. Luckily for the Heat, they broke the streak in this game and found a way around that value.

Much later in the period, Martin Pospisil got one back for the Heat when the Wolves goalie misplayed the puck and Pospisil picked up the loose puck and buried it on the wraparound.

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The first third ended in a 1-1 draw, with Wolves leading 18-11 on shots.

The tie didn’t last long as Wolves scored their second goal of the night just under two minutes into the second half. That was the extent of the goals in the second frame and Wolves led 2-1.

In the third phase, things got interesting. Josh Leivo drew Wolves 4:56 at halftime with two goals. Eight seconds later, Justin Kirkland answered for the heat of a turnover in Chicago, bringing that game back to one.

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The Heat came to the wire, which scored with about a minute and a half to go. They brought in Dustin Wolf for the extra attacker and called a timeout with 57 seconds left. Eight seconds into their time-out, Glenn Gawdin made it big with his first goal of the series to force extra time.

The Heat gained some ground in the shooting category, knocking out the Wolves 35-33.

In overtime, the Heat went into overtime at 5:35 when Walker Duehr paused part-time to end the game and made a holding call to put the Heat on a massive power play.

The Heat maintained really tight zone pressure for more than half of their power play, eventually scoring the game winner at 6:43 OT.

Gawdin’s two-goal performance must not be overshadowed by Dustin Wolf’s performance either. Wolf stopped 31/34 shots and made some big stops on dangerous shots. Something he must continue to do as they dig deeper into this series.

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To stay alive

The chances were not only in the series, but also in overtime against the heat. This marked the first time in team history that they achieved a playoff game winner in overtime. The reality of the situation was that the Heat were just a goal and seconds away from playing their last game at the Stockton Arena for the foreseeable future.

next up

Both teams remain in town and will be right back at it on Saturday night in Stockton. The fact is, the Heat are still on the brink of elimination and need to win three more games in a row if they want to play in the Calder Cup Finals. It doesn’t get any easier if they make it far enough to games six and seven in Chicago.

Game five begins Saturday night at 7:00 p.m. MT.

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