Gulfport Energy Corp. beat Wall Street consensus by producing 1.527 Bcfe/d in the third quarter, but volumes are likely to decline in the coming months as the company spent the bulk of its drilling and completions budget earlier this year.

Third quarter production, driven by the Utica Shale and the South Central Oklahoma Oil Province (SCOOP), increased 7% from the year-ago period and 12% from 2Q2019. The company said, however, that full-year production is expected to average at the midpoint of its previously announced guidance range of 1.360-1.400 MMcfe/d, which implies a sequential decline in 4Q2019 production, according to analysts. 

Gulfport spent nearly 80% of its budget in the first six months of this year, which set it up for a ramp in volumes in the third quarter. But the company drilled just two gross wells in the Utica and one gross well in the SCOOP during that period, while another was still being drilled when the third quarter came to an end.

Only three gross wells were completed in the Utica and another two wells were in various stages of completion there during the third quarter. The company did pull forward production by turning 16 wells to sales in the Utica during the period.

The Utica also continued to account for the bulk of the company’s volumes at 114.5 Bcfe during the third quarter, while the SCOOP accounted for about 26 Bcfe. Gulfport sold its legacy assets on the Gulf Coast in July.

Gulfport’s average realized prices during the third quarter were $2.04/Mcfe, down from $2.44/Mcfe in the year-ago period. Realized 3Q2019 prices included an aggregate non-cash derivative loss of $54.1 million. Before the impact of derivatives, realized prices were down across the board during the period to $1.64/Mcf of natural gas, $51.75/bbl of oil and 38 cents/gallon of natural gas liquids.