The Colorado Springs Thunder kept their hold on top of the PIHA Rocky Mountain Division standings as they swept the Denver Blizzard, 6-2 and 7-1 in front of a packed house at the Tour Arena on Friday night. The Thunder extended their winning streak to four games, and improved their record to 7-1-0-0, while the Blizzard fell to 0-4-0-0.
More importantly, the evening was also the Thunder’s Fifth Annual Jersey Auction, with proceeds this year benefiting the Marion House, a charity in Colorado Springs that provides a soup kitchen, community outreach, client services, and children’s services for families in need. Over the past five years, the Thunder organization has raised more than $10,000 in support of local charities.
“As an organization, we make it a priority to be involved in the community,” said Thunder Captain CJ Yoder. “We once again had a great turn-out for our jersey auction, and raised almost $3,000 for a great cause. Thanks to all the fans who bid on the jerseys – your generosity was greatly appreciated! We would also like to give a special thanks to Transit Mix Concrete for sponsoring the great events this evening!”
The first game saw the Thunder jump out to a quick 2-0 lead only 1:10 into the game. Brian Yingling got the scoring started only :13 seconds in on assists from Jesse Tuttle and CJ Yoder. Ryan Pedersen then quickly followed up as he stripped a Blizzard defender of the puck high in the slot and shot the puck past goaltender Marcus Rogers to make the score 2-0. Yoder added a power-play goal at 4:18, and the Blizzard notched a goal of their own at 7:00 to make the score 3-1 at the half. In the second period, Jami Yoder lit the lamp twice and Yingling notched his second goal of the evening, while the Thunder defense allowed only one more Blizzard goal to make the final score 6-2. CJ Yoder was named the first star of the game with five points (1-4), Yingling was named the second star of the game with four points (2-2), and Jami Yoder was named the third star with two points (2-0). Thunder netminder Dan Lamb made 12 saves to earn the win, while Rogers faced 20 shots in the loss.
The second game saw the Thunder take a 3-0 lead to halftime on tallies from Jesse Tuttle, Jami Yoder, and CJ Yoder. The Thunder extended their lead to 6-0 barely five minutes into the second half, as CJ Yoder notched his second goal of the game, and Brian Yingling and Josh Serby also lit the lamp. The Blizzard countered with a goal of their own and 9:46, but the Thunder’s Matt Pedersen sealed the 7-1 victory with only :59 remaining in the game. Mike Gibson earned the victory for the Thunder between the pipes, turning aside 12 shots, while Marcus Rogers suffered his second defeat of the evening after facing 25 shots. CJ Yoder was named the first star of the game (2-1), Yingling earned second star honors (1-2), and Jami Yoder was named the third star of the game (1-2).
In the minor games played earlier in the evening, the Black Forest Thunder earned their first two wins of the season as they downed the Lowry Blizzard, 3-2 and 4-1.
Up next for the Colorado Springs Thunder is the Lakewood Fire on November 13 at the Tour Arena in Colorado Springs. Tickets are available and can be purchased at the door or online.