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Allen vs Cincinnati Preview, Coach’s Corner with Steve Martinson, ECHL Shooting Percentage Leaders and More

Thursday, February 24th
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It has been a rough morning here in front of my computer. Between watching what is happening in Ukraine and worrying about my daughter (a nurse) driving from Plano to Parkland Hospital on icy roads at 5:00 am this morning I have not written a word in two hours. I just got a text that Erin arrived safe and sound at the hospital. Hope everyone is safe today and prayers for the people of Ukraine.

– The Americans are in Cincinnati for a three game series outside of the Mountain Division. The teams will play tonight and Saturday at 6:30 pm (Allen time) and 2:00 pm on Sunday.

COACH’S CORNER WITH STEVE MARTINSON

“We will have a full lineup for a change tonight. We will have one extra forward as a healthy scratch.”

“Antoine Bibeau met us in Cincinnati and will get the start in goal tonight.”

“I put Chad Costello on reserve yesterday but that was done as a way of managing the roster and salary cap. He will come off reserve today and play tonight.”

“I might have to move one of the injured players to IR depending on how things unfold the next day or two.”

“We will have a practice tomorrow to get the goalies some shots. Players that haven’t played much recently will skate but the others will have the day off.”

ALLEN VS CINCINNATI PREVIEW

– Allen will enter the series with as strong a lineup as they have had all season, even though they are still missing some key players like Chad Butcher and Ben Carroll. The additions to the lineup are goalie Antoine Bibeau, defenseman Nolan Kneen and forwards Branden Troock and Josh Winquist. Here is the roster in Cincinnati:

Goalies

  • #31 – Luke Peressini
  • #34 – Antoine Bibeau
  • #40 – Frank Marotte

Defensemen

  • #3 – Darian Skeoch
  • #4 – Kris Myllari
  • #7 – Eric Roy
  • #8 – Jake Kearley
  • #24 – Nolan Kneen
  • #25 – Phil Beaulieu

Forwards

  • #9 – Josh Winquist
  • #10 – Jackson Leppard
  • #11 – Branden Troock
  • #13 – Chad Costello
  • #16 – J.C. Campagna
  • #18 – JD Dudek
  • #19 – Jared Bethune
  • #21 – Jack Combs
  • #26 – Spencer Asuchak
  • #28 – D-Jay Jerome
  • #29 – Kolten Olynek

– Allen is 4-5-1-0 in its last 10 games and has lost two straight games. Cincinnati is 4-4-2-0 in its last 10 games and has lost six of the last eight.

– A team statistical comparison gives the edge to Cincinnati in all categories:

  • Average goals scored: Cincinnati 3.5 vs Allen 3.3
  • Average goals allowed: Cincinnati 3.1 vs Allen 3.5
  • Average shots on goal: Cincinnati 31.1 vs Allen 28.6
  • Average shots allowed: Cincinnati 29.1 vs Allen 34.6
  • Power play percentage: Cincinnati 19.0% vs Allen 17.6%
  • Penalty kill percentage: Cincinnati 80.5% vs Allen 79.4%

– Allen’s top six forwards of Costello-Asuchak-Leppard and Combs-Winquist-Troock are averaging close to six points per game this season. As a group they have over 500 games of AHL experience.

– Special teams will clearly play a role in this series. Cincinnati is the fourth most penalized team in the ECHL (813 PIMS) while Allen is ranked #10 (687 PIMS). Allen has 32 fighting majors, Cincinnati 30 so fisticuffs are likely. Allen does not have any extra defensemen and just one extra forward, so they need to be careful.

– Shorthanded goals can always be a factor given Allen leads the league in shorties allowed. Allen has allowed 17 shorthanded goals, Cincinnati has allowed eight. Allen has scored seven shorthanded goals, Cincinnati has scored just five.

– If any games go to overtime, Allen’s record in overtimes is 1-5, Cincinnati’s is 1-3. In shootouts Allen is 1-1 and Cincinnati is 2-0.

– Scoring first is always an advantage. Allen is 12-8-2-1 when scoring the first goal of the game, Cincinnati is 14-4-2-0.

– Here is the game preview issued by the Allen Americans: https://allenamericans.com/media/game-day-americans-travel-to-ohio/

OTHER COMMENTS

–  Not to overstate the importance of this series, but Allen is in a tight race for a playoff spot, time is running out and the Americans will have the best lineup they have had in quite a while. If Allen doesn’t get at least four points in Cincinnati it would be a big disappointment.

– As a reminder here is what is happening this week. Allen’s point percentage is currently .511 and could be as high as .540 with three wins in Cincinnati or as low as .480 if the Americans lose all three games in regulation. The Mountain Division has tightened up. Kansas City is in last place, one win below .500, Wichita is at .500 and Allen is one win above .500. Tulsa is currently in fourth place, three wins above .500. Anyone of these teams could be in fourth place or last place by the end of the week. Tulsa is at home for three games against Rapid City. Kansas City is at home for three games against Utah. Wichita is on the road for one game stops in Toledo and Indy.

– Current Mountain Division standings by points percentage:

  • .630 – Utah
  • .578 – Idaho
  • .559 – Rapid City
  • .531 – Tulsa
  • .511 – Allen
  • .500 – Wichita
  • .490 – Kansas City

Idaho’s .578 points percentage is the lowest for any second place team in the four divisions. If any of the teams in the Mountain Division can string together some wins, they will quickly move up the standings.

DID YOU KNOW: ECHL top shooters by shooting percentage (minimum 60 shots). Goals and shots are in parenthesis:

25.7% – Orrin Centazzo, Newfoundland (18-70)24.2% – John Albert, Toledo (16-66)23.7% – Thomas Ebbing, Reading (18-76)22.9% – Justin Almeida, Wheeling (19-83)22.4% – Jackson Leppard, Allen (15-67)21.9% – Yauheni Aksiantsiuk, Idaho (16-73)

The post Allen vs Cincinnati Preview, Coach’s Corner with Steve Martinson, ECHL Shooting Percentage Leaders and More appeared first on Allen Americans Hockey Club.

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