Wednesday, February 27, 2013

10 Little Known Facts & Martinson Comments 2/26/13

Garrett Clarke photo by
Garrett Clarke's first professional goal was the game winner as the Americans defeated Ft. Worth 3-1 last night at the Allen Event Center. As described on twitter by teammate Darryl Bootland, "Sorry if you missed it !! Clarke's 1st pro goal , end to end Bobby Orr like , then slapshot top corner."

The outcome was great as the Americans now have a five point lead on Ft. Worth with a game in hand and a six point lead over Wichita who has a game in hand over Allen.

In spite of what seemed to me like the official scorer having the under in the shots on goal pool the Americans need to generate more offense as we head down the stretch. The official shots on goal had Ft. Worth with the edge 19-15 with the Americans getting credited with one shot in the first period which I think is an all time record. Fifteen shots per period might be a better goal than fifteen per game.

Here are some of the comments from coach Martinson after the game.

- Pretty bad first period as we didn't have much jump after a day off Monday. Even if the official scorer missed a couple of shots on goal it was a bad offensive period. We should be able to generate more offense against the Brahmas defense as the strength of their team is their speed and forwards.

- Expect to get Bootland back on Friday. The time off has helped him as he looks good in practice.

- Even though we got a power play goal (we were 1-6) we could spend the next two days working on the power play as I didn't like some of the decisions we are making.

- Dell has been great the last two games. Sometimes when your offense is struggling you need to have your goalie be your best player and that is what Dell has been. We will continue to ride Dell on Friday.

- Hopefully we can stay healthy and get some consistent line combinations which has been difficult with all of the injuries. Look for Bootland being back with Maiani on Friday and Pineault with Lukin against Wichita's top line.

- First periods have been a problem for us all year. I have even threatened to bring in music I listen to rather than what is played in warmups that the players like. Self motivation is what is needed to make sure everyone is ready for the game.

- Having a first good period will be imperative against Wichita on Friday. Even when we have control of the puck in the offensive zone we are not getting pucks on the net.

- If you noticed last night when goalie Brad Fogal left the ice one time for a sixth attacker the extra forward jumped on too quickly and their was a stoppage in play. That is not called "too many men on the ice" but "premature goalie change" which is a stoppage of play not a penalty.

- A fan asked about using Clarke on the point on the power play and coach said it was a good idea since we are struggling and he might try that this weekend. If you remember Clarke was used on the point early in the year.

 Other Items:

- With the great wrap around goal scored by Jamie Schaafsma last night which was his 22nd goal of the season we finally have someone with more goals than Scott Howes scored (21) before he left for the AHL.

-  Everyone I talked to at the game last night was pretty tight lipped about the Penner suspension decision which should be handed down today. Reading between the lines would tell me he is gone for the year. I think he may have played his last game as an Allen American.

- Did some research yesterday looking at the home and away record of the Brahmas under Dan Wildfong as everyone has always said how hard it is to play at Nytex Centre. The stats would say that is true and good reason for the Americans to win the regular season championship and maintain home ice advantage throughout the playoffs. Here are the numbers. The Americans have an all time record of 17-2-4 against Fort Worth at the AEC and a record of 11-8-3 at Nytex centre.

- This home and away disparity is even more evident when you look at Wildfong's record since he started coaching the Brahmas in 2007. His home record is 131-41-18 while his away record is 81-91-16. Now that is what I call home ice advantage. Since Nytex is so unique I wonder if moving the games to Fort Worth will afford them the same advantage.

- Nice to see Kale Kerbashian get a goal in the last game his parents and girlfriend were here to watch him before heading back home to Thunder Bay.

- The three stars of the game were #1 Schaafsma, #2 Dell & #3 Clarke. Jamie is 4th in the CHL in three star points. For those that don't follow this stat you get five points for being named the number one star, three points for being the number two star and and one point for being the number three star. Jamie has 41 points.

- Anthony Maiani has only one goal since January 26th but has been an assist machine lately. He has at least one assist in ten of our last twelve games. I know he is our best puck distributor but I wish he would be just a little more selfish and take a few more shots. Mr. Under the Radar  leads the team in points (51), assists (37), & plus/minus (+16) and as the smallest guy on the team who isn't afraid to go into the corners he hasn't missed a game all year. I'd say Mr. Under The Radar might be MVP of this team.

- Darryl Bootland at 15.2% and Brian McMillin 13.8% lead the team in scoring percentage. I'm not counting Scott Howes who was at a gaudy 27.6% when he got promoted to Springfield.

- Have you noticed the Americans now have 1347 penalty minutes on the year. The next closest team is Rapid City with 959.

- Power play futility continues even though the 1 for 6 last night (16.7%) was actually an improvement. In the last nine games we are at 9.5% and since Skinner left we are at 11.5% UGH!!

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