Thunder sweep Reign, advance in Kelly Cup Playoffs

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After finishing seventh in the Western Conference with 74 points, The Stockton Thunder’s defense of their Western Conference title was not supposed to last long heading into the Kelly Cup Playoffs. To many surprise it was the Ontario Reign’s season ending in 4 Games on April 23.

Ontario, the No.2 seed who had dominated the season series early with convincing wins in Stockton, were outplayed and outmuscled in all four games by the Thunder, the No.7 seed.

Thunder goalie Brian Foster has put up an outstanding performance in the series making save after incredible save, stopping 109 out of the 116 shots he has faced, while giving up one goal in the first period.

After a very impressive 3-1 victory in Game 1, the Thunder erupted with an offense attack in Game 2. Jeremy Langlois helped the Thunder take Game 2 by recording the Thunders first hat trick of the year, and Joey Martin also found his hot stick tallying a hat trick in game three.

The decisive game turned out to be the most competitive game of the series. Ontario took a 1-0 lead into the third period. However the Thunder rallied tying goal coming just 34 seconds into the third period by James Henry. Nick Trembly got the game winner at 6:02 of the third period.

The defense, which was a major concern coming into the postseason due to breakdowns that led to easy goals, has turned up the pressure in the playoffs by finishing their checks. The biggest check of the series came in Game 2 by Ryan Constant who blasted Ontario forward Everett Sheen into the Reigns bench sending him upside down into his teammates lap.

The Thunder wait to face the winner of the Utah Grizzlies- Bakersfield Condors series with the Thunder being on the road to start the series.