Back on Dec. 8 the Condors honored Josh Currie, who seems to have a knack for scoring hat tricks, with a unique bobblehead doll giveaway featuring a sombrero hat.
On Wednesday night Currie was wearing a sombrero and holding one of his bobbleheads after scoring three goals — one in each period — to lead the Condors to a 4-2 win over Stockton at Rabobank Arena.
It was Currie’s fifth hat trick for the Condors over the past three-plus seasons.
“It would have been kind of nice to get it on the bobblehead night but it didn’t work out for me, but it’s nice to have the goals start going in for me,” said Currie, who moved into the team lead in goals this season with 14.
Th Condors took a 3-2 lead into the final period and Currie completed his hat trick at 5:47 on his second power-play goal of the night. The assists came from Cooper Marody and Tyler Benson who assisted on all three of Currie's goals.
“Give a lot of credit to Cooper and Benson,” Currie said. “Those guys are phenomenal playmakers and all I have to do is get open. They seem to find me. A lot of credit goes to those two.”
Shane Starrett stopped 16 shots to get the win, the second straight for the Condors, who moved a point ahead of Colorado for the fourth, and final, playoff spot.
“It’s huge,” Currie said of the win. “Right now we’re battling for that fourth spot with Colorado and these games against Stockton are huge because they’re behind us.”
The Condors host Stockton again on Friday night.
Bakersfield opened the scoring 12:58 into the first period when Currie put the finishing touches on a power-play breakout. Cooper Marody brought the puck out of Bakersfield’s zone and fed Tyler Benson, who drove to the left wall near the faceoff circle as he entered Stockton’s zone. Currie, who had stopped just inside the right point, then drifted to the high slot, took a pass from Benson and rifled a wrister past Jon Gillies.
“We kind of worked on it yesterday in practice, something a little new and it seemed to work out to perfection,” Currie said. “Things went the way they were supposed to. They found me there and it went in.”
But before the public address announcer could make the announcement, the Heat had tied the game.
Stockton won the faceoff and, 20 seconds after the Bakersfield goal, it was a 1-1 game as Tyler Graovac scored from the left circle.
The Condors struck again on the power play with two minutes left in the period when Mitch Callahan set up just outside the blue paint and got a couple of whacks at the puck after a pass from Evan Polei, and got the second one past Gillies.
The see-saw scoring continued in the second when Alan Quine blasted a one-timer from the right circle past Starrett on the power play to even the game 2-2 at 9:18.
Currie then put the Condors back on top when he took a feed from Marody, who was below the goalline, and scored from the low slot with two minutes left in the period.
Benson had three assists to give him 23 on the season and move him into first place on for the AHL rookie assist lead. He has six assists in his last sevens games .. Currie has seven points in his last six games .. Marody has a four-game point streak and six assists in his last four games.