WICHITA, KS – The Brampton Beast faced off against a familiar face on Saturday, but despite quality scoring chances throughout the game had difficultly solving former Beast netminder Grant Rollheiser, who made 26 saves to help the Wichita Thunder to a 5-1 victory.
Jeff Brown scored his third goal of the season, while Brayden Rose picked up his first point since returning from injury. Parker Van Buskirk made 24 saves in a duel with Beast all-time wins leader Rollheiser.
The first period saw a run and gun style of hockey with both teams trading chances as the Thunder drew first blood just over half way through the opening frame. A Wichita cycle left Dannick Gauthier with the puck in the corner who found Kenton Miller alone in front, making no mistake in wiring a one-timer past Van Buskirk.
After Dalton Thrower took a cross-checking penalty at the end of the first period, the Beast started the second on the penalty kill. After starting the kill looking strong, the Beast allowed the the Thunder to cycle the puck to Wichita captain Ian Lowe, who fired a bullet top-shelf for a 2-0 lead.
With Brett Lyon sitting in the box, Dalton Thrower again was called for cross checking, sending the Thunder to a 5-on-3 just under three minutes into the third period. Just 10 seconds into the 5-on-3, the Thunder found Gauthier at the top of the circle and he wired a shot past Van Buskirk to put Wichita up 3-0. With Thrower still on the box, the Wichita power play struck again as Justin Bernhardt found Gauthier for his second goal of the night with just one second remaining in the penalty.
A minute and a half later, the Beast ruined Rollheiser’s shutout bid, as Lowe was sent to the box for tripping and the Beast power play went to work. Brandon Devlin collected the puck on the sidewall and found Rose on the point with a saucer pass. Rose walked the line and then rifled a shot that was tipped in front by Brown, who beat a screened Grant Rollheiser to cut the lead to 4-1.
Wichita’s Garrett Klotz replied with just under four minutes remaining in the third period as he fired one home to push the Thunder advantage to 5-1.
The Beast complete their four game road trip Tuesday in Missouri to take on the Mavericks before returning home on Friday April 10, to take on those same Mavericks for two games. April 10 is Picture Day at the Powerade Centre, where fans are encouraged to bring their cameras and take pictures of and with the Beast after their game. April 11 is Cancer Awareness Day, where the Beast will be hosting their Stick it to Cancer walk before the game, which precedes a barbeque and other fun activities for fans including painting the ice after the game. April 12 is Jersey Off Our Backs Day at the Powerade Centre, where, directly following the game, the Beast players will be giving their jerseys to the lucky winning fans. Also Sunday is the Beast’s last team skate of the year, where fans have the chance to bring out their skates and hit the ice with the Beast after their game. For more information or tickets please visit www.bramptonbeast.com or call 905 564 1684.