Thursday, March 8, 2018

Allen Win Streak Continues with 2-1 Shootout Victory Over Idaho, Game Recap, Coaches Comments, Video Highlights, Allen Acquires Forward J.C. Campagna, Costello Update & More

The Allen Americans got a big win last night to start off their six game road trip by beating the Idaho Steelheads 2-1 in a shootout before a Wednesday night crowd of 4251 at CenturyLink Arena. The Americans showed a lot of perseverance from beginning to end. They gave up the first goal of the game, were out shot in every period and overtime and were down to their last attempt in the shootout before scoring twice to win the game.

-  After a scoreless first period Allen gave up a power play goal at the 8:47 mark of the second period but answered back with a power play goal of their own four minutes later when Alex Guptill was able to stuff in a rebound. It was Guptill's 24th goal of the season. The 1-1 game held up as neither team could score in the third period. Idaho had four power plays in the third period including a brief five-on-three, Allen had none. The penalty kill unit came up big time and time again.

- The overtime saw a total of 10 shots on goal (6-4 in favor of Idaho) with both teams having numerous quality scoring chances but neither could get the puck in the net. Idaho chose to go first in the shootout. Neither team was able to score in the first two rounds but the Steelhead's Justin Parizek scored in the top of the third round. Alex Guptill had to score the keep the shootout going and he did just that. Idaho missed in the top of the fourth round which gave Casey Pierro-Zabotel the chance to be the hero and he buried the game winner.

- Clearly the number one star of the game was goalie Jake Paterson who stopped 41 of 42 shots in regulation, all six shots in overtime and three of four in the shootout. Jake has started all three games since he arrived in Allen a week ago and has won all three. His GAA is 1.59 and his save percentage is .958.

- Here are the highlights with the goals in regulation and the shootout:

- Here is the game recap issued by the Idaho Steelheads:

- Here are Idaho coach Neil Graham's post game comments:

- Idaho goalie Tomas Sholl was starting he first game in goal for the Steelheads after being signed a week ago. Because of an injury to Dallas Stars goalie Ben Bishop the top goalie for Idaho, Philippe Desrosiers was recalled to the Texas Stars on Tuesday. Sholl has now played for four teams this season, two in the SPHL and two in the ECHL. Here are his post game comments:

- Here are some post game comments from Steve Martinson and Casey Pierro-Zabotel:

"We wanted that extra point badly.".....Casey Pierro-Zabotel

"Our guys never quit and Jake Paterson made some spectacular saves.".....Pierro-Zabotel

"Overall just a gutsy win by our guys and a great way to start the road trip.".....Pierro-Zabotel

 "Jake Paterson was stout for us especially in that five-on-three and in the overtime."..... Allen coach Steve Martinson

"We couldn't skate for two days because we had to put all of our equipment on the bus after practice on Sunday morning and then we traveled all day Tuesday. The goalie kept us in the game and we had to just go out and win the third period. I think we will get a lot stronger as the weekend goes on.".....Martinson

"The last time we played here we were shorthanded and they took advantage of it. I started Thrower, Gunn, Arseneau, Carrier and Frazee to make sure they knew we had guys in the lineup so they wouldn't do it again. I knew they wouldn't start anything but just wanted to make sure.".....Martinson


- After struggling for so long it was great to see the special teams play a big part in the victory last night. Allen's only goal came on the power play as they went 1-4. The penalty kill unit killed six of seven Idaho power plays.

- Allen didn't make up much ground in the Mountain Division standings last night because Tulsa and Wichita both won. The Americans did pass Utah who did not play. The standings now have Wichita in third place with 68 points, Tulsa in fourth with 63 points, Allen in fifth with 62 points and Utah in sixth with 61 points. Allen has games in hand so if you look at winning percentage Wichita is in third place at .567, Allen is in fourth place at .534, Tulsa is in fifth place at .525 and Utah is in sixth place at .517.

- The Allen Americans acquired forward J. C. Campagna from the Wheeling Nailers yesterday to complete the deal that sent Marcus Basara to Wheeling. Campagna is a second year pro who was born in Dallas. He is a 6'4" 205 pound left shot forward who has played for three different teams this season before arriving in Allen. He is just returning from an injury that has kept him out of the lineup since January 24th. He has played in 32 games this season and has 26 points (8 goals 18 assists). His .81 points per game average will place him sixth on the team when he meets up with the Americans in Utah.

- Allen had a big win in Idaho last night but now they need to concentrate on the next two games of the road trip in Utah on Friday and Saturday. It will be a tall task as Utah is the hottest team in the ECHL right now. The Grizzlies have earned points in nine straight games with a record of 8-0-0-1. Their streak started with two wins against Allen on February 16 & 17. Even more impressive is six of the nine Grizzlies games during this streak were on the road.

- Allen has now won three games in a row which has been a rarity this season. It has only happened four times prior to this streak. The longest win streak of the season is four games.  

- The playoffs have started in Germany for Chad Costello's team. I traded messages with Ashley Costello and I think the playoffs work like this. The top six teams are automatically seeded into the playoffs. The next four teams (7-10) are involved in a "pre-playoff" series where #7 plays #10 and #8 plays #9 to determine the final two teams in the playoffs. Chad's team (Iserlohn) finished eighth in the regular season so they are now playing the pre-playoff series against the ninth seed (Bremerhaven). They played the first game yesterday and Bremerhaven won 5-2. The winner of this best of three series moves on to the playoffs and will play the #1 seed. Game two against Bremerhaven is tomorrow (Friday). Sounds like an uphill climb for Chad's team. Ashley did share with me their plan is to be back in Texas when the season is finished so their oldest son can finish out the school year and start up baseball. Check out Chad's highlight reel from this season.

- At the beginning of the season many felt the strength of the Western Conference was in the Mountain Division. However, with the season winding down the top two teams in the conference are Toledo (85 points) and Fort Wayne (81 points) from the Central Division. Colorado is third with 80 points. If you look at inter divisional play the Central Division has a big advanatge over the Mountain Division with a record of 44-27-2-1.

- The ECHL trade deadline is this afternoon at 2:00 pm CST but it is unlikely coach Martinson will make any trades today.

DID YOU KNOW: Tristan King and Thomas Frazee played together last night but they were first teammates when they were kids playing junior hockey. They were teammates in 2006-07 playing for the Portland Winter Hawks in the Western Hockey league. They spent the next 10 years following each other around to various teams but always missed being teammates by a year or two. They both played for Medicine Hat (WHL), Quad City (CHL & ECHL), Greenville (ECHL), Fort Wayne (ECHL) and Evansville (ECHL). They have finally reunited as teammates with the Allen Americans. 


  1. Idaho again showing how classless they are by not selecting our goalie as a 3 star.
    Suspension for the "headbutt?"

    1. I hear you on the three stars. There are a handful of teams that have the policy that the three stars are just for the play of the home team. Obviously the best player in the game was Jake Paterson.