The Stockton Heat faced the Iowa Wild on Saturday night, and forward Tyler Graovac not only scored a hat-trick but tied an AHL record in the process.
Tyler Graovac had a game that may define his AHL career for the Stockton Heat on Saturday as he recorded an AHL-record tying THREE short-handed goals against the Iowa Wild.
The record was set in 1982 by former Nova Scotia Voyageur Dan Daoust who accomplished the feat against the Fredericton Express. Graovac’s short-handed hat trick tied Daoust’s record, however he was unable to break the record. A record of that nature though, is likely to stand for quite a while.
— AHL Communications (@AHLPR) December 23, 2018
Graovac has been having a solid season for the Heat, as the 25-year old was tied for third on the team in scoring going into the game. However as a result of both Curtis Lazar and Kerby Rychel being pointless in the affair and Graovac recording not only a hat trick but adding an assist as well, it appears that Graovac has tied Rychel for the team lead in points with 23.
Graovac’s night is exactly what the Heat needed as they attempt to push their way up the Pacific division. They’re currently sitting in fifth with 29 points in 29 games, ahead of only the San Diego Gulls and Ontario Reign.
It isn’t a rarity for Graovac to be featured on the score-sheet as of late either, he’s currently riding a 3 game goal scoring streak dating back to the December 19th loss to the Bakersfield Condors. He scored on Friday night in the 8-7 OT loss to the Wild as well.
This is Graovac’s first season with the Stockton Heat, as he’s been a bit of a journeyman in the making lately. Last season he spent most of his season with the Hershey Bears, however he did have five games in the NHL with the Washington Capitals.
Prior to that, he was a regular with the Iowa Wild and bounced up and down between Iowa and Minnesota. He even played 52 games with the Minnesota Wild in the 2016-2017 season.
The Brampton, Ontario native still has a shot to make it to the NHL and stick there, especially if he can keep up his recent run of play. However at 25-years old already, the former 7th round pick has a lot of work ahead of him if he wants to pass a younger player on the depth chart going forward.
stats from theahl.com
featured image photo credit – Josh Tessler