ALLEN, TX – Anytime you win a road game 5-1 to snap a four-game losing streak it is a good night. That is what happened to the Allen Americans last night in Utah before a crowd of 6463 at the Maverik Center. However, you must have a “win is a win” philosophy to come away from the victory feeling good about the team’s performance.
Maybe the best approach is to take a look at the 5-1 win from a glass half full versus glass half empty perspective.
THE HALF FULL VERSION:
– Allen scored five goals and was led by the core guys that needed to step up to get things turned around. Goal scorers were Eric Roy (3), Chad Costello (3&4), Spencer Asuchak (5) and Greger Hanson (7).
– After a long drought, the Americans had a power-play goal for the second game in a row. They were 1-3 on the power play.
– Allen was perfect on the penalty kill as Utah was 0-3 on the power play. The Americans came into the game having given up six power play goals in 19 attempts on the road.
– Riley Gill was outstanding in goal stopping 40 of 41 shots.
– Allen had only six penalty minutes while Utah had 18 penalty minutes.
– Allen out shot Utah 12-9 in the first period. It was the first time in eight games Allen has out shot their opponent in the first period.
– For the first time all season, Allen won a game after giving up the first goal. Utah scored the first goal of the game at the 4:20 mark of the opening period but never scored again. The Americans scored five unanswered goals.
THE HALF EMPTY VERSION:
– Allen scored five goals but only generated 20 shots on goal, their lowest total of the season. They were out shot 41-20. The 21 shot difference was the highest of the season.
– The Americans were out shot in the last two periods by a hard to believe 32-8. In the second period they were out shot 18-2. The two shots were the fewest shots in the second period by any team in the ECHL all season.
– The Americans scored five goals on 20 shots but it was against a rookie goalie with a 1-3 record, a GAA of 4.76 and save percentage of .833.
– For the eighth time in 12 games, Allen allowed the first goal of the game.
– Defensive lapses continued for the Americans, especially in the last two periods. Utah coach Tim Branham said it best, “The difference tonight was goaltending. We out shot them 2-1 and I guarantee we out-chanced them 2-1.”
– It was an important win for Allen last night as a first to step getting back on the right track. They will need to play a much better game tonight in the rematch with the Grizzlies if they expect to win. Being out shot 2-1 will not win you many games.
– Not sure who selects the three stars of the game in Utah and not to take anything away from the players selected (#1 Costello, #2 Hanson, #3 Roy) but it is hard to believe you could watch that game and not give a star to Riley Gill who saved 40 of 41 shots with many of them being quality chances. All I can say is C’MON MAN!
– The win last night was the 300th regular season win in Allen Americans franchise history. 172 of the 300 wins have been with Steve Martinson as head coach.
– With his three-point night (2 goals, 1 assist) Chad Costello now has 16 points and is just one point behind the league leaders in points.
– With a goal and an assist last night, Eric Roy now has 10 points (3 goals 7 assists) which is second in the league for points scored by a defenseman.
– Gill’s save percentage is now at .939 which is fifth in the ECHL.
– Even though the team won the game last night it is hard to remember a worse 5-1 win. Coach Steve Martinson has mentioned at his last two press conferences he has been working the phones to try and improve the roster. I wouldn’t be surprised to see him make a move in the near future.
– Despite their poor start and being mired in fifth place, with the win last night Allen is just five points out of first place in the Mountain Division. Here are the current standings:
15 points – Colorado
13 points – Alaska
13 points – Idaho
12 points – Utah
10 points – Allen
7 points – Missouri
5 points – Rapid City
– Game time tonight is 8:00 pm Allen time and it is “Pooch on the Pond” night in Utah. Fans can bring their dog to the game and sit in the exclusive pooch section.
DID YOU KNOW: The top two scorers in the ECHL are from the Rapid City Rush who have the worst record in the Western Conference (2-9-1-0). Lindsay Sparks and Ryan Walters each have 17 points. Sparks and Walters have a third of the Rush’s total points (34 of 105).