San Diego Gulls dominate Barracuda 5-1 in first preseason game

San Diego Gulls

Photo courtesy of the San Diego Gulls

San Diego Gulls
Credit: San Diego Gulls

After having the first two preseason games canceled, the San Diego Gulls dominated the San Jose Barracuda with a strong performance from Trevor Zegras and Sam Carrick on Tuesday night.

With the first two games of the preseason schedule canceled because of COVID-19 issues, the San Diego Gulls played their first exhibition game against the San Jose Barracuda on Tuesday night, coming away with a 5-1 victory.

The Gulls have a loaded roster chock-full of NHL talent, and they needed just five minutes into the first period to light the lamp. On the man advantage, Trevor Zegras carried the puck to the right dot, feeding a backdoor pass to Andrew Agozzino for what was essentially a tap-in. San Jose responded later in the period, but that would be all the visitors could muster.

“Having Zegras on the halfway, with the way he sees the ice, really you just have to get open, and he’ll find you,” said Gulls forward Sam Carrick. “We saw that on the one goal where we found the seam to Agozzino and Agozzino made a great play to seam it again.”

Carrick, a former fifth-round pick in 2010 by the Ducks, extended San Diego’s lead to kick off the second period — a beautiful snipe from the slot past San Jose netminder Josef Korenar. The 28-year-old Carrick would later add another goal in the second period, with a backdoor pass from Agozzino. Trevor Zegras also assisted on Carrick’s second goal, his second apple of the night.

The Stouffville, Ontario native is one of the veterans on the roster and was proud with how his team battled, despite it being only an exhibition game.

“I thought our guys did a great job,” Carrick said. “No one was scared out there, and everyone was battling hard. I think we had a winning mindset. We were going to do whatever it took to win, and you saw that with the young guys leading the way. It’s great to see.”

Two minutes later, 2016 fourth-round pick Jack Kopacka put the finishing touches on the game, carrying the puck into the San Jose zone, and firing a shot past Korenar’s weak side. Netminder Lukas Dostal made his debut for the San Diego Gulls, stopping 28-of-29 shots on the evening. Before the AHL season got underway, Dostal was loaned to Ilves of the Liiga — Finland’s top hockey league — where he posted a 1.64 GAA and .941 SV% in 11 games.

“I thought he was excellent,” head coach Kevin Dineen said. “I thought he had some great composure. “He looked very comfortable in net. That was a very strong game for him to have under his belt.”

These same two teams will meet again on Thursday night.

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