Idaho Steelheads hope to strike back in Stockton

Idaho must win twice in California to bring the Western Conference Finals back to CenturyLink Arena.

clangrill@idahostatesman.comMay 8, 2013 

No doubt about it, the Idaho Steelheads are in an unenviable position.

The ECHL hockey team trails Stockton 2-0 in the Western Conference Finals, and the next three games in the best-of-7 series are scheduled to be played on the Thunder's home ice.

"We know the hole we're in," Idaho coach Brad Ralph said. "But there have been an awful lot of hockey teams that have come back from a 2-0 deficit. … They still have to beat us twice."

If the Steelheads lose Game 3, it will be just the second time since the regular season began in early October that Idaho has lost three games in a row.

"This team all year hasn't been too up and down," Ralph said.

If Idaho is going to get back into the series, its first mission is solving Stockton goaltender Olivier Roy. The Quebec native has seen 75 shots in the first two games, and has allowed four goals. He limited Idaho to one goal in the series opener.

Roy's counterpart, Steelheads goalie Josh Robinson, has allowed seven scores on 50 shots. Ralph didn't sound like he was leaning toward making any major changes after arriving in Stockton on Tuesday afternoon.

"I've been happy with the way we've played, for the most part," he said. "Obviously, we're going to make a few tweaks, but I don't foresee any changes. But I haven't made any decisions, as of yet."

HOW TO FOLLOW THE GAMES

• The Steelheads are hosting a watch party at the SportsZone for all three games this week. The events are free and feature a limited food and drink menu. Doors to the SportsZone, which is on the third floor of CenturyLink Arena, open an hour before each game.

• Games 3, 4 and 5 (if necessary) in Stockton will air live on Cable One channel 17. The broadcast will be an in-arena video feed, not a TV production. There will be no commercial breaks.

• All games can be heard on KTIK 1350 AM.

Chris Langrill: 377-6424

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