The American's 6-3 victory over Arizona on Friday night was a much closer game than the score indicated. On Saturday Allen once again beat the Arizona Sundogs and this time the game was not as close as the score would indicate as the Americans were the 6-4 victors over the Sundogs before 4414 at the Allen Event Center. Allen scored three goals (Lessard, Power, & Hanson) in the first eight minutes of the game to put the Sundogs in a hole and extended the lead to 5-1 at the end of the second period as both Jonathan Lessard and Ben Power got their second goals of the game. Arizona scored three goals in the third period off rookie goalie Eric Levine, who Coach Martinson put in the game with the Americans leading 5-1 to get him some work. Bryan Pitton was put back in the game with less than a minute to play and the score 5-4 to preserve the win as Jamie Schaafsma ended the scoring with an empty net goal with 29 seconds remaining in the game. With the victory Allen moved into second place in the CHL standings.
STEVE MARTINSON POST GAME COMMENTS:
- The positives we are winning games and scoring goals. It was a tough third period for our first year guy. I felt bad for him but I am not going to dwell on that.
- Last night (Friday) we had some power play goals by shooting the puck and screening the goalie and I thought tonight we got away from that which ended up with us going 0-5 on the power play. We talked about coming out of our zone with speed on the power play.
- We did a good job early in the game getting those three goals which was much better than starting two goals down as we did on Friday. We talked to the guys about how important it is to be ready to play and get a good start and they certainly did that.
- Then you have #57 for them (Sebastian Geoffrion) causing crap all of the time. I think Hendrikx and Klotz had just had enough of the guy. I don't like having guys like Geoffrion on my team because all they do is cause problems for their teammates. Players like him start stuff that they don't finish and look for the referee to help them.
- The next three days (Sunday, Monday & Tuesday) we will be taking the all star/midseason break that most teams took in January. With all of the guys that are banged up and injured the timing of the break is great. Even though it was a tough third period tonight the guys are going into the three days off feeling good about themselves with a five game win streak.
- My son is playing a game in a few minutes next door (Community Rink) and it will be my fifth game of the day. My daughter played at 6:00 am this morning and at 11:45 am as it is playoff time, my son played at 4:30 pm before our game and now at 10:00 pm plays again. Five games in a day is a new record for me.
- It was a tough outing for Eric Levine. It is a difficult situation to come in after sitting for two periods to get your first experience in goal. If I could turn the clock back and do something different who knows. We had given up some odd man rushes when we had the lead so part of my thinking was if we put Levine in the guys will not worry so much about trying to score but we came out flat and that was painful to watch. I don't want to spend a lot of time thinking about that but I am sure that kid will not sleep too good tonight knowing he got a shot to play and it was a tough outing.
- Bruce Graham is still in the process of getting in game shape. You can certainly see his potential on the ice. He sees the ice well, he can carry the puck, and does well on faceoffs. I know he would be a lot of fun to play with. He has really only had one practice and I am sure he will be skating some during the break. We can look forward to seeing some good things from Bruce this month.
- The playoff roster, which will be set right after the completion of the season, can include up to 21 players but one of the players will be on the IR for the first round of playoffs and two of the players must be amateur players. You can add the amateurs at anytime and to be honest I will not add any until after the ECHL deadline has passed because better players become available later. So unless we absolutely need to get someone I will wait until after the ECHL deadline to add any amateurs.
- Jon Zion was scoreless last night to end his ten game scoring streak. Brian McMillin had an assist and extended his scoring streak to six games. Tyler Ludwig also had an assist to extend his socring streak to six games. Even more impressive is the fact that Tyler has scored at least one point in 21 of the last 23 games.
- Special teams were a difference maker in the two games with Arizona. The power play scored three goals in twelve opportunities (25%) while the penalty kill only allowed one goal in ten opportunities (90%).
- Alex Lavoie had three assists in the game last night which is the third time in the last four games he has had three assists. He widened his lead in the CHL rookie scoring race to 18 points and his team lead in points to 21. His 70 points already ranks him 5th all time for points scored in a season. The all time record for points scored in a season is held by Colton Yellow Horn who had 88 points in the 2010-2011 season.
- Garrett Clarke got a match penalty for attempt to injure last night and could be suspended for his actions. Two handed slashes to opponents ankles is sure not the way to show how tough you are. It is safe to say with his on ice actions this year Clarke has burned what ever was remaining of the bridge he burned in Allen with his actions in the off season.
- Watch out for the Tulsa Oilers as they are the hottest team in the CHL and have worked their way back into the title conversation by winning ten of their last eleven games. Mired in last place early this season they now have a legitimate shot at getting home ice advantage for the first round of the playoffs which would be quite a feat.
- Mark Guggenberger won his first start in goal for the Gwinnett Gladiators (ECHL) last night. Gurrgenberger was peppered with 48 shots as Gwinnett beat the Florida Everblades 5-4.
- After his tough outing last night Eric Levine had this to say on twitter, "That was NOT the debut I was hoping for but glad we escaped with 2
points. Would be easy to make excuses but that's taking easy way out."
- The hockey tournament of all hockey tournaments takes place this week. Yes, I am talking about the Minnesota High School Hockey Tournament. Two guys playing close attention will be Brian McMillin as his hometown Roseau Rams made the tournament for something like the 34th time. With an enrollment of less than 400 the Rams take on Lakeville North with an enrollment of over 1700. Phil Fox will be cheering for the Stillwater Ponies, where he played hockey, as they made the state tournament for the first time in school history and take on the perennial power house and #1 seed Edina Hornets. To give you an idea of how big this tournament is check this out: Minnesota State High School hockey tourney champion game attendance:19,217,
NBA final attendance: 18,694
DID YOU KNOW: The Allen Americans seem destined to set a single season record for most regulation losses. The Americans have never lost more than 18 regulations games in one season but already have 18 this season. Here are the regulation losses by season:
2009-2010 - 17
2010-2011 - 16
2011-2012 - 18
2012-2013 - 18
2013-2014 - 18