2021 started out a lot better than 2020 ended for the Allen Americans as they beat the Wichita Thunder last night by a score of 5-1 before a home opener crowd of 1413 an INTRUST Bank Arena. One of the signs of a good team is how they respond after a bad game. After the 7-2 drubbing the Americans suffered at the hands of the Thunder on New Year’s Eve their response in Wichita last night could not have been better. The Americans dominated the game. The most telling stat was shots on goal. After allowing Wichita 46 shots Thursday night Allen allowed just 12 shots last night including just one in the third period. The 12 shots allowed is the all time record for fewest shots allowed since Allen joined the ECHL.

 

– Allen scored first, out shot Wichita 34-12, scored a power play goal, was perfect on the penalty kill, had great goaltending, won puck battles and pretty much dominated every facet of the game.

 

– Goals scorers for the Americans were Kameron Kielly (1), Jesse Mychan (6&7), Joe Garreffa (4) and Jake McGrew (5). Here are two highlight packages one from each team:

Allen Broadcast Highlight Package

 

Wichita Broadcast Highlight Package

 

 

– Here is the game recap from the Allen Americans: https://allenamericans.com/news/americans-rebound-beat-wichita-51/

 

– Here is the game recap issued by the Wichita Thunder: https://www.wichitathunder.com/news/echl-news/thunder-loses-to-allen-on-new-year-s.html

 

– Here are Steve Martinson’s post game comments:

 

 

– Checked in with Coach Martinson this morning and he was obviously pleased with the effort but after all he is a coach so he was reviewing video to see where there could be improvements for the game tonight. The injury report included one player that will be a game time decision. If a player sits out, the Americans will be one player short with 17 skaters instead of 18. Not a real problem since Martinson is used to playing with a maximum of 16 skaters. Zach Sawchenko will be in goal again as C.J. Motte is not on the trip and Allen has an EBUG.

 

Martinson also shared the top line center he has signed should be on the transactions list today. He will arrive in Allen this afternoon. There is always paperwork that has to be assembled before a contract can be registered with the league. I will have a full player profile tomorrow if all goes as planned.

 

– The game tonight will be important for both teams. They have split the first two games in what turned out to be one-sided affairs. Getting the win in this third game is paramount to prove which is the better team. Allen wants a repeat of last night and there is no reason to believe they can’t repeat their performance. With three games in just over 48 hours against the same team, the winner tonight is be more about will than skill.

 

 

OTHER COMMENTS

– With his two goals last night Jesse Mychan has taken over the ECHL lead in goals with seven. Jesse is now averaging a goal per game. Tyler Sheehy is in a familiar spot a top the ECHL in assists with six in his first seven games. Tyler led the league in assists per game last season, averaging .94 assists per game.

 

– Allen scored the first goal of the game last night and that is always a big step to victory. So far in 2020-21 the ECHL teams that have scored first have a record of 26-8-2-1. Before getting the first goal of the game last night the Americans had gone seven straight games against Wichita without scoring first.

 

– One streak that did continue last night was the winning team scoring a lot of goals. Going back to the beginning of 2020 Allen has played Wichita nine times. The Americans won six of the nine games and in those six wins scored 7,6,7,8,6 and 5 goals. In the four games Wichita won they scored 4,6 and 7 goals. Allen and Wichita have split their last four games and all have been one sided scores. Wichita won 6-1 and 7-2 while Allen won 6-2 and 5-1. Maybe tonight will break the streak and be a low scoring close game.

 

– There is a full slate of games in the ECHL tonight. Here is the ECHL Today with a preview of all six games: https://www.echl.com/en/news/2021/1/echl-today-jan-2

 

– With Allen’s win over Wichita last night there are no undefeated teams remaining. Allen and Indy have 10 points to lead the league but if you look at winning percentage, because of the discrepancy in games played, the top teams are:

.833 – Indy
.800 – Orlando
.750 – Utah
.750 – Wichita
.714 – Allen
.714 – Florida

 

 

DID YOU KNOW:  Jesse Mychan’s seven goals in seven games is quite a feat. The closest an Allen Americans player has ever managed to average a goal a game was Scott Howes who played 22 games for Allen in 2012-13 and scored 21 goals. It would be almost impossible to have a player average a goal a game over an entire season because any player averaging a goal a game in the ECHL for any length of time will get recalled/loaned to the AHL. I decided to look up the Allen players with the best goals per game average in a single season. Steffes came close to a full season in Allen but was loaned to Milwaukee (AHL) at the end of the seasaon. All of these players ended up in the AHL except Combs who went to Europe.

.955 – Scott Howes, 2012-13 (21 goals in 22 games)
.698 – Gary Steffes, 2014-15 (44 goals in 63 games)
.688 – Jack Combs, 2014-15 (22 goals in 32 games)
.684 – Olivier Archambault, 2017-18 (13 goals in 19 games)
.667 – Gabe Gagne, 2019-20 (24 goals in 36 games)