Emile Poirier played a big part in the Stockton Heat's ability to snap a six-game slide on the road.
The 21-year-old, who was selected 22nd overall in the 2013 NHL Draft, scored a pair of goals -- including the game-winner -- in Saturday's 5-4 overtime victory over the San Diego Gulls at the Valley View Casino Center.
"It felt good. I think last night helped me with my confidence and ... I’m glad it came in a game that we battled hard and got a team win," Poirier said afterwards.
Poirier's first goal on Saturday came in the first period when he was able to tuck the puck into net after beating the San Diego defence on the outside and driving towards the net.
He scored the game-winner 2:34 into the extra frame, going in on an odd-man rush and beating Gulls goaltender Anton Khudobin.
"That’s the way [Emile Poirier] is -- he’s a streaky scorer, so I figured it was coming. When he feels good about his game he puts pucks in the net and we saw that from him [on Saturday.] I don’t want to push my luck and say it again but hopefully this is a sign of good things to come," head coach Ryan Huska told StocktonHeat.com.
Poirier's two-goal game came right after the Montreal, QC product broke out of a nine-game goalless streak. The Heat dropped a 3-1 decision to the Gulls on Friday but Poirier was able to net his first power play goal of the season in the loss.
"I went to the net on the power play and the guys made a good play to get the puck to the slot. The puck went on net and I was just in the right place to tap in the rebound," he said on Friday.
"It’s been a tough stretch and I wasn’t happy about it for sure. To get that one ... was a good relief for me."
In 47 games this year, Poirier has 11 goals and 23 points. He is in the midst of his second professional season.