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Darling Becomes First Thunder Player to Reach NHL

Monday, February 1st
Darling Becomes First Thunder Player to Reach NHL

Wichita, KS (Oct. 27th) - The Wichita Thunder, proud member of the ECHL and powered by Toyota, are excited to announce that former goaltender Scott Darling made his NHL debut last night and became the first player in franchise history to make it to the top of the mountain.

Darling, 26, made his first career start for the Chicago Blackhawks last night and claimed a 2-1 win over the Ottawa Senators. The Lemont, Illinois native made 32 saves for his hometown team and was given the first star of the game. He made 16 saves in the third period to secure the win.

Darling (6-6, 230-lbs) was a sixth round draft pick of the Phoenix Coyotes in 2007, taken 153rd overall. He was called-up from the Mississippi RiverKings of the SPHL and appeared in one game during the 2011-12 season in a 5-2 loss against the Texas Brahmas on January 21st. Darling also joined the Thunder as an emergency back-up during the 2012 CHL Finals against the Fort Wayne Komets. His best season as a pro came during the 2013-14 season when he went 13-6-2 for the Milwaukee Admirals of the American Hockey League (AHL), sporting a 2.00 goals against average and a save percentage of .933. Before being called-up to the Blackhawks, he appeared in two games for the Rockford IceHogs this season, winning both games and only allowing three goals against and making 55 saves.

Prior to turning pro, Darling attended the University of Maine, where he appeared in 54 games. In his two seasons as a Black Bear from 2008-10, he was 25-20-6 with a 2.93 GAA and a save percentage of .893. He turned pro in 2010, signing with the Louisiana IceGators of the SPHL.

The Thunder return home on Wednesday to face the Oilers at 7:05 p.m. Wichita hosts the Missouri Mavericks on Saturday, November 1st at 7:05 p.m. followed by a visit to Tulsa on Sunday, November 2nd at 4:05 p.m. Individual tickets are on sale now. Don't delay! Tickets can be purchased at the INTRUST Arena Box office, by calling 755-SEAT or go online at www.selectaseat.com. Stay up-to-date on all the news during the season by visiting www.wichitathunder.com. About the ECHL

The ECHL began in 1988-89 with five teams in four states and has grown into a coast-to-coast league with 28 teams in 20 states and one Canadian province for its 27th season in 2014-15. There have been 541 players who have started their career in the ECHL have gone on to play in the National Hockey League, including 29 who made their NHL debuts in the 2013-14 season. The ECHL had affiliations with 26 of the 30 NHL teams in 2013-14, marking the 17th consecutive season that the league had affiliations with at least 20 teams in the NHL. Further information on the ECHL is available on its website at ECHL.com, as well as on Twitter and Facebook.