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Barracuda Bites: Dapper ‘Cuda take down Condors in thrilling finish

Look here, old sport; how’d you like to score with five seconds left?

San Jose Barracuda on Flickr

The Barracuda took to the ice on Monday afternoon dressed to impress for Tuxedo Jersey Night, which featured these beauties of bobbleheads as a giveaway:

As it turns out, the Barracuda did impress and much more, as they defeated the Bakersfield Condors with only five seconds remaining in overtime in front of approximately 5,000 fans.

Laurent Brossoit started in goal for the Condors. The 24-year-old was recently waived by the Edmonton Oilers after their acquisition of Al Montoya, but went unclaimed, sending him to the AHL. In four games with Bakersfield, he boasts a record of 2-1-1. Opposite him was Antoine Bibeau, who has been on a tear recently, going 3-1 over his last four starts.

With only two minutes played in the first period, Jacob Middleton made a pass all the way across the rink over to a wide open Emerson Clark, who put it past a stretched out Brossoit glove-side for the 1-0 advantage.

The Condors nearly responded on a breakaway from Mitch Callahan, but Antoine Bibeau showed us all why he is an All-Star with a tremendous split-pad save.

However, Bakersfield did get their chance as Patrick Russell redirected a shot from Caleb Jones on the perimeter to equalize things for the Condors.

Jon Martin nearly put the Barracuda back on top with a series of nice moves, but was stonewalled by Laurent Brossoit to end the first period.

There weren’t any goals in the second period due to great goaltending on both sides of the ice. Jon Martin and Ryan Stanton did end up dropping the gloves, but due to referee intervention, only roughing penalties were issued.

Brad Malone kicked off the third period with a nifty backhand goal, but many Barracuda players took offense to him seemingly knocking down Bibeau after his shot, and another shoving match broke out. The goal was under review, and it really shouldn’t have been, but it was a quick decision by the officials, and Malone’s goal did count for the Condors.

With about ten minutes played in the final frame, Danny O’Regan knocked down a puck that he initially passed, but was deflected, and served it up to Cavan Fitzgerald who fired a wrist shot glove-side that Brossoit had no chance on to even the score for the Barracuda once again.

The Condors found themselves in familiar territory when the horn sounded to end regulation — this would be their fifth time in nine games that they would have to play in overtime. The Barracuda dominated the extra frame offensively, but Laurent Brossoit was a brick wall for the majority of the game — until a certain Nick DeSimone crashed the net.

With ten seconds left in overtime, the line of Marcus Sorensen, O’Regan, and DeSimone got shot after shot on Brossoit, but a loose puck in his own crease provided DeSimone an opportunity to end the game, and he did just that with a backhand poke to end the game.

My Player of the Game goes to Emerson Clark. He was a human wrecking ball on the ice today, taking the body as many times as he could and getting the scoring started for San Jose. Clark may still be on a PTO, but it seems that he’s rapidly becoming a fan favorite in the Barracuda fanbase, and I see a full time contract in his future.

The Barracuda next face the Stockton Heat on Wednesday, January 18th to finish their homestand. The puck drops at 7:00.