It was a disappointing season opening game loss for Allen last night as the Americans lost in Tulsa to the Oilers by a score of 4-3, before a league high attendance of 12,950 at the BOK Center. The attendance was double the next highest attendance among the eight games played in the ECHL last night.
– Allen fell behind early (4:24 of the first period) and spent the rest of the game trying to catch up. Tulsa took a 1-0 lead into the first intermission, but the Americans got the equalizer 24 seconds into the second period (Hank Crone). The Oilers responded and took a 2-1 lead into the second intermission and extended the lead to 3-1, scoring 14 seconds into the third period. To their credit, Allen fought back with goals at 4:27 (Liam Finlay) and 10:12 (Zach Pochiro) to tie the score 3-3. A delay of game penalty by Allen a couple of minutes later proved to be the difference. It took Tulsa just five seconds into the power play to score the game winner and make the final score 4-3.
– What didn’t work well for Allen last night?
- They gave up the first goal of the game. Teams that scored first went 6-1-1 last night.
- Allen managed just four shots in the first period, were out shot in all three periods and had the fewest shots (21) of the 16 teams that played last night.
- Allen was 1-6 on the power play and could not convert on a long (1:38) 5-on-3 power play.
- Too many odd rushes/breakaways.
– What did work well for Allen?
- The team worked hard throughout the game, coming back from 1-0 and 3-1 deficits.
- Allen was outshot 30-21 for the game but was the better team in the third period. A third of Allen’s 21 shots came in the last half of the third period.
- Rookies Liam Finlay and Hank Crone each scored a goal and had several other grade A opportunities last night. They were the leading scorers in Allen’s preseason game and it looks like they will be a big part of Allen’s offense.
– Here are the game recaps:
- From the Allen Americans: https://allenamericans.com/media/americans-opening-night-party-spoiled-by-tulsa/
- From the Tulsa Oilers: https://tulsaoilers.com/oilers-open-season-with-win-in-front-of-12950/
– Here is a link to all of the ECHL video highlights from last night, including the Allen vs Tulsa game: https://www.echl.com/en/tag?id=5bb763bdd3bc0f20ed973ef0&name=ECHL%20Video
CHAD COSTELLO COACH’S COMMENTS
- “It took us too long to find our game tonight.”
- “I saw some positives as we showed we have comeback capabilities, and we had a chance to win the game.”
- “We had some chances where we needed to shoot the puck.”
- “This game gives us a lot to build on for sure.”
- “We need to do a better job of holding onto the puck, so we can utilize our skill.”
- “We will have a good opportunity to bounce back tomorrow in Wichita.”
- “We got a couple of guys banged up tonight, will see how they are in the morning.”
ALLEN VS WICHITA PREVIEW
– Allen went on this road trip with every healthy player on the roster (19), so no extras with the expansion by one of player for each game this season (17 skaters plus 2 goalies). Jackson Leppard didn’t play last night so the Americans played short one skater. Tommy Daniels mentioned on his broadcast that Leppard would not play in either game this weekend and it was a non-injury issue. My guess is something came up regarding his immigration that didn’t come to light until the team was already headed to Tulsa or it was an issue that could not be resolved until the team returns to Allen. The bottom line is the team will be short at least one skater tonight in Wichita and possibly more if any of the banged-up players have to sit out.
– Logan Flodell will get the start in goal tonight. His ECHL stats last season, playing in South Carolina (6 games) and Reading (13 games) include a record of 12-5-1 with a GAA of 2.33 and save percentage of .918. He is Allen’s only assigned player from Ottawa.
– Wichita did not play last night so the game tonight against Allen is the first game of the season for the Thunder. The Americans have always played well against Wichita going all the way back to the CHL days. In the last five seasons the Americans record against the Thunder is 33-15-4-2. In games played in Wichita, Allen’s record is 14-7-2-2.
– Allen has a league low of just one assigned NHL/AHL player. By my count, Wichita has six assigned players which is a big advantage.
– There is a full slate of ECHL games on tap tonight with all 28 teams in action. Here is the link to the ECHL Today with a preview of all 14 games: https://www.echl.com/en/news/2022/10/echl-today-oct-22
– The ECHL got off to a good start from an attendance perspective last night, led by the huge crowd in Tulsa. The eight games last night drew 46,616 fans, an average of 5827 per game.
DID YOU KNOW: Reviewing ECHL transactions for every day back to October 7th, here are some facts on the number of NHL/AHL players assigned to ECHL teams. These numbers may not be 100% accurate but they are very close.– The average number of players assigned to each team is just over six.– All 28 ECHL teams have at least one player assigned.– Allen is the only team with just one player assigned.– Teams with 3 or 4 players assigned (next lowest after Allen) include Toledo, Maine, Ft. Wayne, Cincinnati, Kalamazoo, Tulsa and Orlando.– As usual, Newfoundland leads the pack with 16 players assigned.– Teams with 9 or 10 players assigned (next highest after Newfoundland) include Savannah, Adirondack, Jacksonville, Trois Rivières, Worcester, Indy and Rapid City.