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Watch: Brawl erupts in Barracuda game with Stockton Heat

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			Watch: Brawl erupts in Barracuda game with Stockton Heat

SAN JOSE — Barracuda coach Roy Sommer got bonked on the head by the stick of an opposing player after an exchange of words in front of his team’s bench Sunday escalated into a brawl during San Jose’s 2-1 overtime win over the Stockton Heat at SAP Center.

Heat forward Brandon Bollig tapped Sommer on the top of his head with his stick after the Barracuda coach got into a profanity-laced shouting match with Bollig’s teammates and Stockton coach Ryan Huska along the benches, triggering a brawl between the American Hockey League rivals.

Both Sommer and Bollig received game-misconduct penalties for the altercation.

“I didn’t get hit hard, like a tap. You can’t hurt this guy,” Sommer said. “He didn’t ka-bong me or anything.”

The brawl came on the heels of Saturday’s clash between the Pacific Division rivals that featured three fights, a five-minute major for a knee-to-knee hit and 122 combined penalty minutes.

Sunday’s brouhaha started after Barracuda goalie Troy Grosenick accidentally caught Heat forward Ryan Lomberg with a high stick as he was skating out from behind the net.

“It was inadvertent,” Grosenick said. “I was just making a play behind the net to (Julius Bergman). I didn’t see (Lomberg) coming, but at the same time, I’ve got to keep my stick down, so lesson learned.”

As Lomberg skated back to his bench, he shouted something toward the Barracuda, setting off Sommer, who could be seen yelling a string of expletives at the Heat and Huska.

“I don’t remember what he said,” Sommer said. “It’s a team, they get under your skin — and they got under mine — and shame on me I guess.”

“I know what was said,” Barracuda forward Zack Stortini said with a chuckle, declining to comment further. “It’s part of my job to be involved.”

As Sommer leaned over his bench, getting into the faces of several Heat players, Bollig lifted up his stick with his right hand and bumped the AHL’s all-time winningest coach on the top of his head, sending the benches into a frenzy with several players shoving, hitting and swinging sticks at one another.

Earlier in the game, Stortini and Bollig had nearly fought, but the altercation was broken up by the referees. Stockton was coming after Stortini on Sunday afternoon because he had thrown what it believed was a dirty knee-to-knee hit Saturday on Oscar Kylington, one of the top defensive prospects in the Calgary Flames farm system, Saturday night.

Kylington did not play on Sunday. The Heat declined to have their coaches and players interviewed for the story.

“I’m a guy who plays an aggressive style of game,” Stortini said, defending Saturday’s hit. “I had my feet planted, I didn’t stick my leg out. I was going for the hit. He had the puck and I was just trying to separate the man from the puck.”

“I’m not a dirty player. I’m not out there to intentionally do things like that.”

This weekend’s melees weren’t the first time things have gotten testy between the Barracuda and the Heat. The squads racked up a combined 138 penalty minutes in a game that featured three fights on January 25.

“They do some crazy things, they think we do some crazy things, and there’s not a lot of love lost between the two cities, the two teams,” Sommer said.

If the Calder Cup playoffs started today, the Northern California rivals would square off in the first round. The Barracuda (43-15-7) have clinched the Pacific Division with three games to play and the Heat hold a three-point lead for last playoff spot in the division.

“If they’re going to grease it up, we’ve got no problem answering,” Grosenick said. “We’ll deal with it.”

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