Thunder Lose Game 1 Of CHL Finals, 5-3

By: Wichita Thunder Email
By: Wichita Thunder Email

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Saturday, April 28, 2012

Chris Auger scored the game-winning goal at 8:04 of the third period to give the Fort Wayne Komets a 5-3 win over Wichita in Game One of the Central Hockey League Finals Saturday night at INTRUST Bank Arena. Thomas Beauregard scored twice for Wichita and Alex Bourret added a pair of helpers in the losing effort. Fort Wayne grabs a 1-0 lead in the President's Cup Finals with Game Two taking place tomorrow afternoon.

Fort Wayne grabbed a two-goal lead in the opening period, scoring twice in 1:55. Jamie Milam made it 1-0 after a nice passing play sprung him loose and beat Adam Russo with a backhand. At 12:10, Bobby Chaumont redirected a Brett Smith shot and made it 2-0. Wichita had three chances on the power play including back-to-back opportunities but was unable to take advantage.

In the second, Garett Bembridge got the Thunder on the board, scoring his first of the playoffs and first since joining Wichita late in the season to cut the Fort Wayne lead to one. Bourret's shot from the left point was loose in front of Nick Boucher and Bembridge jumped on the rebound to make it 2-1. The Komets got one back when Auger scored his first of the game at 12:26 of the second and extended the lead back to two, 3-1. The Thunder then got back into the game as Thomas Beauregard (6) scored at 17:16 and 18:34 to tie the game at three.

After Nick Boucher made a few terrific saves at the start of the third, Chris Auger scored from the top of the right circle to make it 4-3 with less than 12 minutes left and the Komets held on late to take the first game of the series, 5-3. Jamie Lovell added an empty-net goal with one second left in the game to preserve the victory.

The loss is Wichita's first of the post-season on home-ice and is the first time the Thunder have trailed in a series during the playoffs. Also, the Komets won their first game against the Thunder this year, which includes the regular season meetings.

Wichita continues to dominate teams in the second period with three more tonight and have scored 24 second-period goals in the playoffs. Wichita went 0-for-7 on the power play and Fort Wayne was 0-for-2.

Game Two of the President's Cup Finals is tomorrow afternoon at 5:05 p.m. Don't forget about the Championship Tailgate that will take place at the Wichita Ice Center from 12-4 p.m. For more details, check out the Wichita Thunder website. Tickets are on sale now and going fast! For more information, call 755-SEAT, visit the INTRUST Bank Arena Box office or go online at .

Wichita Thunder season tickets for 2012-13 are now on sale. A $50 dollar non-refundable deposit is required for all season tickets. Contact the Wichita Thunder Monday-Friday, 9 a.m.-5 p.m. at (316) 264-4625 if you are interested in season tickets, or visit the fan relations table behind section 120 at any Wichita Thunder home game.

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