After the Checkers broke the ice in the opening frame courtesy of a bar-down snipe from Andrew Miller, Warren Foegele converted a franchise record fourth shorthanded goal on a slick breakaway move early in the second. Riding his own momentum, the rookie burst off on another breakaway minutes later, beating Springfield goalie Samuel Montembeault for his second of the period.
In the third the Thunderbirds finally put one past Alex Nedeljkovic, who finished with 24 saves and several ambitious sliding poke checks, but it wasn’t enough to stop Charlotte’s roll. As the Checkers denied Springfield’s final push, Foegele completed his hat trick with an empty net dagger, locking in Charlotte’s 4-1 victory.
I thought we came out strong and dominated early on. Once we got up we started making some mistakes, but as far as the start, we started on time.
Vellucci on having four days between games
We had energy. We finally had some days off, we had a lot of energy and we came out strong. One of the things we get in trouble with is that when we get up we start to turn the puck over too much and make our job a lot harder. We should be able to just shut it down and not give them any chances.
Vellucci on Foegele’s game
He was skating, he was moving his feet, he was competing and he was battling. When he skates, he’s a real fast player. He’s a smart kid and he seems to have the shorthanded breakaways down.
Vellucci on the chemistry between Foegele and Bishop
Everyone keeps calling it the fourth line but I play them as much as the guys that are on the other lines. They’re great penalty killers, they’re energy guys and they can contribute offensively.
Warren Foegele on his game
We struggled a bit and our penalty kill came up pretty big for us today. I think Sunday we need to have more intensity. I had some great passes from my linemates and some fortunate bounces.
Foegele on his four shorthanded goals
In junior I had some success there and here it’s definitely nice to contribute, but the main goal is not to get scored on.
Foegele on having some rest
It’s been huge. We played a lot of games in that last week so it was nice to rest and recoup, but we’ve got to get back to it on Sunday because those guys are going to come out hard.
Clark Bishop on playing with Foegele
I think we’re two hard-working guys that do our job right. We’ve been playing together since the beginning of the season so things are starting to work well for us.
Bishop on his line getting more playing time
It feels good anytime the coach has confidence in you like that. You can go be confident yourself, go play your own game and know that he’s going to play you in those situations.