The San Diego Gulls picked up their first road win of the season Wednesday, defeating the Ontario Reign 5-4 in overtime at the Toyota Sports Performance Center in El Segundo.
The team’s rebound came after three consecutive losses on the road to the Henderson Silver Knights.
“It’s never fun to lose at all, but three in a row – that’s not Gulls hockey,” said forward Chase De Leo. “It’s important for us to go through that adversity.”
Andrew Poturalski played a large role in the win, picking up three primary assists. He leads the Gulls (8-4-0-0) in scoring and shares the American Hockey League lead in assists with Jeremy Davies of the Chicago Wolves.
Ontario started the scoring 2:15 into the contest as Cameron Gaunce picked up his first goal of the season, but San Diego responded with a Benoit-Olivier Groulx goal to end the first period tied at one.
San Diego took its first lead of the game at 4:35 into the middle frame when De Leo scored. Rasmus Kupari pulled Ontario even with his second goal of the season at 11:23.
In the third period, San Diego had a 42-second two-man advantage and capitalized with back-to-back power-play goals.
The first of the two goals came on a feed from Poturalski to Andrew Agozzino, for his third power-play goal of the season.
“It’s a five-on-three,” said Gulls head coach Kevin Dineen. “You should generate a lot of chances.”
Trevor Carrick added the second goal on a low-feed from Poturalski.
Ontario tied the game with 20 seconds remaining on the clock as Akil Thomas scored.
The teams traded scoring chances in overtime, but De Leo ended the game with a goal between Troy Grosenick’s pads with 38 seconds remaining.
“I just tried to get lost and be a little rat behind the play,” said De Leo on his goal. “It’s nice when a goalie gives up a rebound and you’re there to put it in.”
De Leo co-leads the club with five goals and ranks second in points despite missing three games during his time on the Anaheim Ducks taxi squad.
The Gulls return home to host the San Jose Barracuda for a two-game set beginning at 7 p.m. Friday at FivePoint Arena.