Wednesday, December 31, 2014

Allen vs Rapid City Game Preview, Hanson Scores First AHL Goal (The Video) & More

Daniel Tetrault and the Rapid City Rush invade the Allen Event Center (AEC) tonight for the first of two games against the Allen Americans as they will also play on Friday. The schedule favors the Americans as they have had a couple of days to rest while the Rush played last night in Tulsa and then had to travel to Allen. Rapid City is in sixth place in the Central Division with just 26 points and are 15 points behind the league leading Americans. Don't let the Rush record (12-15-0-2) fool you as they are definitely a team that is playing great hockey right now. Here are a few of their most recent accomplishments.

- Last night Rapid City was trailing Tulsa 3-0 after the first period and preceded to score five unanswered goals to win the game 5-3.
- The Rush have won their last four road games (Tulsa, Missouri, Wichita, Tulsa) and two of the games have been shutouts.
- Rapid City has won five of their last six games.
- In their last ten games Rapid City has won six games and lost four. In Allen's last ten games they have won six and lost four.
- Rapid City is ranked #21 in average goals per game at 2.72 but in their last six games they have averaged 4.00 goals per game.

If Allen wants to halt their two game losing streak tonight they will have to come out fast and be aggressive but avoid gambling and trying to manufacture plays that are not there. Coach Martinson spent a lot of time at practice yesterday working on gap control and other system related drills in an effort to tighten up some of the defensive lapses that happened last weekend.

Special teams are always a key and it will be important for Allen to stay out of the penalty box. They have given up power play goals in each of their last three games. Rapid City's power play has been outstanding as they have score five power play goals in their last three games going 5-11 for a 45% conversion rate.


- Allen has won two of the three games against Rapid City this year. They split in Rapid City early in the season and the Americans won 3-1 in their only meeting in Allen.

Winning percentage: Allen (.759) - Rapid City (.448)
Average goals scored: Allen (4.33) - Rapid City (2.72)
Average goals allowed: Allen (2.67) - Rapid City (2.76)
Average penalty minutes: Allen (22.81) - (Rapid City 17.79)
Power play percentage: Allen (15.3% at home) - Rapid City (10.9% on the road)
Penalty kill percentage: Allen (86.2% at home) - Rapid City (88.2% on the road)
Goal differential: Allen (+45)  - Rapid City (-1)
Team plus/minus: Allen (+164) - Rapid City (-47)

- Scoring leaders for Allen are Combs (48 points), Costello (44) and Steffes (29). For Rapid City the leading scorers are Jesse Schultz (26), Dylan Clarke (21) and Robin Soudek (20).


- Jessey Astles is no longer with the team and has been placed on team suspension. Did not hear this officially from the team but my understanding is Jessey is returning home to pursue a college education.

- Congrats  to Greger Hanson who scored his first AHL goal last night as his Worcester Sharks beat the Bridgeport Sound Tigers 6-2. Greger has a point in four of the five games he has played for Worcester. You can see his goal at about the 2:30 mark of these game highlights. Greger is wearing #8. Got a kick out of Greger's wife, Andrea, who posted this on social media, "Greger scored his first career AHL goal and of course I was in the bathroom!" You will always remember where you were for  that goal Andrea. You can enjoy these highlights forever.

- In the battle of the seven former CHL teams against the older ECHL teams it was another loss for the CHL as Toledo beat Brampton 6-3 last night. The former CHL teams are now 2-11 against the older ECHL teams with two more games on tap tonight.

- How is this for an odd statistic. Dallas Ehrhardt played 47 games in Allen last year and did not get a goal. He played his first 13 games in Missouri this year without scoring a goal. He then scored goals in back to back games according press releases even though only one of the goals shows up in the official ECHL stats. Congrats to Dallas on his first (and maybe second) professional goal.

- Make sure to wish Riley Gill happy birthday if you see him at the game tonight as the New Year's baby turns the big 30 tomorrow.

DID YOU KNOW: Found this on a message board and did not fact check it but interesting info if it is true. Everyone says it is still early in the season so there is plenty of time for their team to move up the standings and make the playoffs. However, in the last five years there have been 77 teams make the ECHL playoffs and 70 of those teams were in a playoff spot or tied for a playoff spot at the Christmas break. If your team is not already in the top four in the division the odds are stacked against them making the playoffs.

No comments:

Post a Comment