ALLEN, TX – The ECHL All-Stars defeated the Adirondack Thunder last night by a score of 8-7 before a crowd of 3,767 and a nationwide audience on the NHL Network. With two goals and two assists, Matt Garbowsky of the Colorado Eagles was named the game’s most valuable player. Garbowsky played his college hockey at Rochester Institute of Technology (RIT) where he was a teammate of former Allen defenseman Nolan Descoteaux. He was also a finalist for the Hobey Baker award (hockey’s version of the Heisman award).

– It was fitting that Allen’s representative to the All-Star game, Chad Costello, had an assist on the game-winning goal. Mr. Assist set up Fort Wayne’s Shawn Szydlowski for the tally with under three minutes left in the game.

– Between the two 25 minute halves of the game, three skills events were contested; puck relay, hardest shot and fastest skater. The winning team in each event got one goal added to their score. With all of the talent on the All-Star squad it was Adirondack that won the puck relay and hardest shot (Stepan Falkovsky at 99 mph). South Carolina’s Steven McParland posted the fastest skater time (13.62 seconds) to salvage one point/goal for the All-Stars.

– When I saw the official All-Star team photo yesterday the first thing was to look for Chad Costello and Jaime Garcia in the picture. Once I found Chad and Jaime the next thing I noticed was Chad wasn’t wearing a leadership letter. Not sure who decides on the “C” and the “A” or why there is only one “A” but I had incorrectly assumed the most dominate player in the ECHL over the last three years would be given the “C”. I asked coach Steve Martinson about it after practice yesterday and he had this to say, “Without taking anything away from the appointed captains I am not sure how they overlooked the captain of the back to back ECHL champions not to mention his scoring titles and MVP awards.”

Chad is first row second from left, Jaime second row on the left end

–  Allen fans and team sponsors Mike and Debbie Holum attending the All-Star game and Mike kindly became a field reporter for the night. Mike talked to Chad and Jaime after the game. Here is what they had to say.

“The game was a lot of fun. It is a little bit of an awkward setup with all of the breaks, the four on four and three on three but it was a fun game.”…..Chad Costello

“There were a lot of good players here. You saw the talent and skill of the ECHL”…..Costello

“It was even more fun off the ice meeting the guys. You see them and get to compete against them during the season but here you get to meet them and you respect them even more and that was a lot of fun. That is what the game is all about.”…..Costello

“Most of my time here was spent getting everything ready for the players. Trying to make it actually like a game day.  I tried to make it like a normal routine for everyone.”…..Jaime Garcia


– Practice yesterday saw a few players missing with Costello at the All-Star game and others taking a maintenance day. Riley Gill did skate yesterday but did not participate in the full practice. More practice details tomorrow.

– The ECHL Board of Governors (BOG) had a meeting during the All-Star Classic and to no one’s surprise gave final approval for the Worcester Railers franchise to begin operation next season. The Railers needed a two-thirds vote of the league’s 28 members and the tally was unanimous.

– The BOG also awarded the 2018 All-Star Classic to the Indy Fuel. Here is a link to that article: 

– The Sin Bin will be conducting a poll that starts at noon today for some Mid-Season Awards and the Allen Americans are well represented. Fans can vote as often as they want and when the voting is completed (Monday evening,) TSB will have articles on all the winners. There will be a link to vote at that will be active at noon today. Make sure to go and support the Allen Americans that were nominated and encourage your friends to vote early and often as well.

MVP – Chad Costello
Best Goaltender – Riley Gill
Best Defensemen – Joel Chouinard
Coach of the Year – Steve Martinson

DID YOU KNOW:  The game last night was the fifth time the host team was the opponent for the All-Stars. The last four times the ECHL All-Star game has been held (2017, 2015, 2013 & 2011) it was the All-Stars vs the host team. The host teams have not fared well with last night’s 8-7 All-Stars win over Adirondack being the closest. In 2015 the All-Stars beat Orlando 8-4, in 2013 the All-Stars beat Colorado 7-3 and in 2011 the All-Stars beat Bakersfield 9-3. Did you know the fifth time the All-Stars vs the host team played was way back in 1997 and the host team, Charlotte Checkers, beat the All-Stars 7-6. After that loss, the All-Star game was conference vs conference until 2011 when the game went back to All-Stars vs host team.

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