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A Conversation with Steve Martinson, Game Recap, Video Highlights, Remaining Games, Playoff Goal Scorers and More

Thursday, February 17th
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– For all of you that are regular readers of the blog, I apologize for being so late today. I actually had the blog written early but wanted to make sure to talk to Steve Martinson before publishing. He had more time than usual, so we were able to cover a lot of ground. The team had planned all along to stay in Kansas City last night and travel the 200 miles to Wichita this morning. With rain, ice and snow moving in they considered changing their plans and heading to Wichita last night but by the time the game was over the temperature was already below freezing and it was still raining. The team opted to stay with the original plan and overnight in Kansas City. The team is currently on the road but it is slow going. Here is a recap of my conversation with coach Martinson, followed by the typical blog post for the day.

– As you might imagine a lot of time was spent on the game misconduct penalty last night and penalties throughout the series with Kansas City. A lot of video was shared back and forth and it generated much discussion. As always, not everything can be shared, but here are some of what I took from the conversation.

“The league has acknowledged the disallowed goal on Friday, when it was ruled Spencer Asuchak had interfered with goalie, was in fact a good goal.”

“What I saw on the play where Kearley was given a game misconduct for charging was a knee on knee  hit on our player that wasn’t called. Kearley responded but it is clear in the video he was gliding for a long time before contacting their player. It wasn’t charging and it wasn’t a major penalty. The league agreed and Kearley will not be suspended.”

“After five games watching Kansas City players diving, they finally got called for it twice last night. I have no respect for teams that flop like Kansas City.”

“We had a player (Chad Butcher) get hit with a puck so hard it required a visit to the emergency room after the game to get it checked out. He got up off the ice and somehow made his way back to the bench. That is the difference between teams. Some teams have players that get up even when they are hurt while other stay down when they are not hurt.”

“Butcher is out for the weekend but we will get Skeoch back. Carroll and Hall are day to day.”

“It was a gutsy performance by the entire team last night and on top of that we played with three defensemen and Jared Bethune for the last 50 minutes of the game. It is tough in our league to have to go out every other shift all night along with killing penalties.” The four guys playing defense did a great job.”

“Forward D-Jay Jerome may be cleared to play for Saturday. That would be ahead of schedule, but he is a tough guy. He played a game and a half with an injury that has kept him out for a month.”

– If there is a single word to describe Allen’s 5-4 win in Kansas City last night it would be perseverance. Injuries have ravaged the Americans this season with many players in and out of the lineup. The Americans went into this road trip knowing they would be shorthanded, especially at defense. Six defensemen are on the trip but Ben Carroll couldn’t play because of an injury and Darian Skeoch was serving a two game suspension. Tuesday night Allen played short one skater (15) and with just four defensemen. Forward Jared Bethune, as he had done before, filled in at defense. Steve Martinson brought in J.C. Campagna on Tuesday to keep the Americans from playing with 14 skaters.

– Things went from bad to worse last night. Zach Hall couldn’t play after being injured on Tuesday night and defenseman Jake Kearley was given a game misconduct charging penalty at the 13:56 mark of the first period. All of a sudden Allen was down to 13 skaters and just three defensemen (plus Bethune). Defensemen Kris Myllari, who had a goal in the game, said it best after the game, “It was a real gutsy team win. We were short staffed, had a ton of guys step up and gave everything they had to get a big road win. Marotte was great in goal and we had a great penalty kill tonight.”

– The game started just like Tuesday night; Chad Costello scored the first goal of the game though it took until 8:27 of the first period. The Mavericks answered back on a 5-on-3 power play when Allen was killing off a five minute major and two minute minor at the same time. The game was tied 1-1 after the first period.

– The Mavericks took a 2-1 lead early in the second period, but Allen fought back with two unanswered goals to take a 3-2 lead into the second intermission. Both Allen goals were scored by defensemen. Eric Roy tied the game on what was technically an even strength but was really a power play goal, scored one second after a penalty expired. The go-ahead goal was scored by Kris Myllari with 87 seconds remaining in the second period.

– Leading 3-2 after the second period was a great sign. Allen’s record with a second period lead now stands at 9-0-1-1.

– Allen took a 4-2 lead in the third period on a shorthanded goal by Chad Butcher. The shorthanded goal proved to be a big one as the teams traded goals a couple of times in the third period. After the Mavericks cut the score to 4-3, J.C. Campagna scored the game winner to give the Americans a 5-3 lead. Kansas City closed the gap to 5-4 with less than two minutes remaining but could not get the equalizer after they pulled the goalie.

– It was a big win for the Americans under some very trying circumstances. It was the type of game that undoubtedly brought the team closer together.

– Goals scorers for Allen were Chad Costello (21), Eric Roy (7), Kris Myllari (6), Chad Butcher (7) and J.C. Campagna (2). Jack Combs and Spencer Asuchak had two assists in the game. Here are the video highlights: https://youtu.be/j3kjLuBzzUc

– Here is the game recap from the Allen Americans: https://allenamericans.com/media/americans-beat-mavericks-5-4-in-series-finale/

– It doesn’t get any easier for the Americans who now must turn their attention to Wichita, where they will play on Friday night before closing out the week against the Thunder at home on Saturday night.

OTHER COMMENTS

– Allen won four of the five games in the series with Kansas City. The team that scored first won all five games.

–  Chad Costello had two more points last night on a goal and an assist. He has goals in three straight games. In the last six games, Chad has 10 points (3G, 7A). He now has a four point lead in the ECHL scoring race with 54 points (21G, 33A).

– What a start by J.C. Campagna who signed with Allen on Tuesday and never had a practice with the team before he started playing. After not playing for over a year, all Campagna has done is score goals in his first two games including the game winner last night.

– In Mountain Division action last night Allen, Rapid City and Wichita won while Kansas City, Idaho and Tulsa lost. Here are the current standings with games remaining in parenthesis:

  • .649 – Utah (25)
  • .594 – Idaho (24)
  • .554 – Tulsa (26)
  • .551 – Rapid City (23)
  • .533 – Allen (27)
  • .490 – Wichita (24)
  • .479 – Kansas City (24)

– Wichita has finally climbed out of the cellar in the division. The Thunder have a record of 7-0-2-0 in the last nine games. Kansas City has fallen to last place with a record of 4-7-1-0 over its last 12 games.

– Allen has 27 games remaining with 13 of them at home. Here is a breakdown of the remaining games by home (H) and away (A):

  • 7 games – Wichita (3H, 4A)
  • 5 games – Tulsa (2H, 3A)
  • 4 games – Kansas City (3H, 1A)
  • 3 games – Toledo (0H, 3A)
  • 3 games – Cincinnati (0H, 3A)
  • 3 games – Iowa (3H, 0A)
  • 2 games – Idaho (2H, 0A)

– 14 of Allen’s remaining games are against teams that currently have points percentages below .500 (Wichita, Kansas City, Iowa). Three games are against Toledo who has the ECHL’s best points percentage (.733). The other 10 games are against teams with points percentages between .594 and .542.

DID YOU KNOW: Allen fans are fortunate to be able to watch two of the top playoff goal scorers over the last 10 seasons. Here is the ECHL Stats post for today:

In the last 10 seasons, 881 ECHL players have scored at least one Kelly Cup playoff goal but only 15 have more than 20 goals. Just five of the 15 players with more than 20 playoff goals since 2012-13 are still active. Great players on this list who will add to their playoff goal totals in the 2022 Kelly Cup playoffs.29 – John MaCarron, Florida27 – Shawn Szydlowski, Fort Wayne27 – Kyle Bonis, Toledo23 – Spencer Asuchak, Allen23 – Chad Costello, Allen

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