The good news is Allen played better team defense and goalie Andrew Shortridge was excellent in goal with a .962 save percentage as the Americans held Rapid City to a lone goal in the School Game today. The bad news is the potent Allen offensive was held scoreless and the morning crowd of 5119, mostly third, fourth and fifth graders, went home happy as two Rapid City goalies earned a 1-0, 30 shot shutout over the Americans.
– Allen has now been shutout three times this season and in the odd stat category all three shutouts had a final score of 1-0. The Americans were shutout in Cincinnati 1-0 in overtime and 1-0 in Idaho in a shootout.
– The Americans had plenty of quality chances but what really let them down was their power play which after being on fire has suddenly gone cold. The power play was 0-5 in the game and that included a four minute double minor midway through the third period. After converting at a rate of over 30% for 10 games the power play has been scoreless in the last 14 attempts.
– There was so much good in the game for Allen. They limited the Rush to 26 shots on goal while getting 29 of their own, the penalty kill was perfect (0-4) and they had plenty of scoring chances. If the Americans keep playing this way the goals will come.
– Here is a game recap from the Rapid City Journal with quotes form Rush coach, Daniel Tetrault: https://rapidcityjournal.com/sports/rush-get—win-over-americans-in-morning-contest/article_0accd086-1a35-5019-8845-9a35d82814b0.html
– Here is the game recap issued by the Rapid City Rush: https://www.rapidcityrush.com/en/news/2020/rush-blank-allen-behind-defiel-and-madsen
– Here is a link to the game video highlights which shows some great scoring opportunities by the Americans and great saves by Andrew Shortridge: https://www.echl.com/en/tag?id=5bb763bdd3bc0f20ed973ef0&name=ECHL%20Video
– The Americans will have a day to regroup on Thursday and time to prepare for game two of this three game series which takes place Friday night.
– I had the chance to talk to coach Martinson after the game and he thought the team played better defensively but the breakdown on the one goal the Americans allowed was the precise play they worked on at length in practice. Martinson was also not pleased with the execution on the power play. He has ice time tomorrow but has not decided if the team will practice with back to back games coming up this weekend. Martinson said it will help to have newly acquired defenseman Cody Corbett in the lineup on Friday after playing with only five defensmen today. He also told me he has signed a forward to replace Mitch Vandergunst who was sent to Orlando to complete a future considerations trade from last October. The future considerations was part of a three way deal that allowed Allen to obtain the rights to Jared VanWormer from Norfolk.
DID YOU KNOW: It is certainly strange that Allen has been shutout three times this season and all three times it was by a score of 1-0. Here are the number of times the Americans were shutout in each season since joining the ECHL.
3 – 2019-20 (thru 51 games)
9 – 2018-19
5 – 2017-18
2 – 2016-17
2 – 2015-16
1 – 2014-15