ALLEN, TX – In one of the more entertaining games you will ever see the Allen Americans beat the Tulsa Oilers 5-3 last night before a happy crowd of 4163 at the Allen Event Center (AEC). You would have thought there was a full moon given all the strange happenings in the game.

To start, with it was the longest home game of the year at close to three hours (2:48).  Considering the game didn’t go into overtime that is quite the feat since Allen has played seven overtime games at the AEC this season. Here are a few reasons the game went so long and some other memorable facts.

– The referee called 32 penalties in the game and there was only one fight. The referee called a staggering 26 minor penalties and each team had eight power-play opportunities.

– The one fight in the game will be one to remember as the goalies squared off at center ice. Stephon Williams and Jake Hildebrand put on quite a show and got the fans and both benches excited. With the starting goalies being tossed from the game Allen took immediate advantage scoring on Tulsa backup goalie Devin Williams 47 seconds after the goalie fight.

Jeremy Brodeur was great in relief of Stephon Williams stopping all 22 shots he faced and came away with the win. Tulsa’s back up goalie stopped 11 of 13 shots and took the loss.

– Because of all of the power plays the goalies faced a barrage of shots, totaling 95 for the game. Tulsa had the advantage 52-43.

– Allen scored first and took a 2-1 lead into the first intermission which all but assured victory. The Americans are now 12-0-1-0 when scoring first and 11-0-1-0 when leading after the first period.

– It looked like another second period collapse by Allen early in the second period after Tulsa came back from a 2-0 deficit to take a 3-2 lead. However, two late second period goals on great plays by Pierro-Zabotel and Archambault turned the tide back in Allen’s favor.

– When you are playing the fourth game in five days, your team is dead tired and you have been playing shorthanded you expect the best players to be the best players. Casey Pierro-Zabotel (2 goals 1 assist), Olivier Archambault (2 goals 1 assist) and David Makowski (3 assists) led the team in scoring. Makowski was a +3 in the game and also had the hit of the year against Tulsa’s leading scorer Charlie Sampair. Sampair left the ice and did not return so hope he will be okay. Captain Joel Chouinard was a +3 in the game and has charged up the league plus/minus chart over the last five games. Joel is +12 over the last five games and +19 for the season. That is tops in the ECHL for defensemen and number three overall.

– Goal scorers for Allen were Casey Pierro-Zabotel (7&8), Mathieu Aubin (5) and Olivier Archambault (3 & 4).

– Here are the five Allen goals as seen through the Sporfie highlights:

1. Casey Pierro-Zabotel – Lots to watch on this replay. Zabby starts with a clean win off the faceoff, then watch him position himself in front of the goalie. Finally, Makowski’s shot goes off his leg.

2. Mathieu Aubin – Aubin positions himself in front of the net raises his stick to call for the puck from Eric Roy, Roy sends the puck toward the net and Aubin tips it home:

3. Pierro-Zabotel –  Great shot that shows the art of the top shelf backhand from in close. Sweet!

4. Olivier Archambault – Watch Archambault skate through four Tulsa defenders and bury the puck. The guy is dynamic.

5. Archambault – Speed and skill is a dangerous combination.


– Here is Steve Martinson‘s pregame interview with game host Kayla McLain:


– Allen gained some ground in the Mountain Division standings as Kansas City beat Wichita 7-4 and Rapid City beat Idaho 3-1.  Here are the current Mountain Division standings with games played in parentheses:

46 points – Colorado (30 games)
40 points – Idaho (31 games)
38 points – Wichita (28 games)
37 points – Allen (28 games)
30 points – Tulsa (28 games)
28 points – Utah (30 games)
16 points – Rapid City (28 games)

– If you were wondering which Mountain Division teams have been playing the best recently here are the points earned over their last 10 games. Maximum would be 20 points:

17 points – Colorado
14 points – Allen
14 points – Idaho
13 points – Tulsa
11 points – Utah
8 points – Wichita
2 points – Rapid City

Tommy Olczyk of the Indy Fuel made history last night with a hat trick made up of all shorthanded goals. He joins Shawn Szydlowski, Jamey Hicks and Chad Costello as the only players in ECHL history to accomplish that feat. It was a lucky day for Chad Costello on 12-12-12 when his Colorado Eagles visited the Las Vegas Wranglers.

– The Christmas break is so short and most players live so far away they don’t get to be with their families for Christmas. Some players are lucky that their family can join them in Allen for Christmas and such is the case with Mathieu Aubin. I had the pleasure to meet Mathieu’s dad, Normand, after the game last night. When Mathieu signed with Allen back in September I wrote a brief introduction and found out his dad was quite the hockey player. When I had a chance to talk to Normand for a few minutes last night and asked about his hockey playing days and amazing numbers he was very humble saying those were different times. I don’t care what the times were if you average over a goal a game and over two points a game for your entire junior career in the QMJHL (Quebec Major Junior Hockey League) that is significant. Normand is a QMJHL legend with 258 goals in 254 games. He is #5 all time in QMJHL goals. By the way he is in good company as #1 on the list is Mike Bossy, #8 is Mario Lemieux and #10 is Guy Lafleur.

– Here is what I wrote back in September: Like many hockey players from Canada, Aubin comes from a hockey background. His dad, Normand, was a third-round draft choice (#51 overall) of the Toronto Maple Leaf in the 1979 NHL draft. He played in 63 NHL games in his career. Normand had some sick numbers in his junior career in the Quebec Major Junior Hockey League (QMJHL). In his NHL draft year (1978-79) he had 149 points (80 goals 69) assist in 70 games. For his junior career (254 games) he averaged 2.03 points per game. An even more amazing stat is he averaged just over a goal per game scoring 258 goals in his 254 junior career. I would say Mathieu comes from good hockey “stock”.

DID YOU KNOW: For the last word today I want to wish everyone a very Merry Christmas, Happy Holidays and my hope for a prosperous New Year. I am thankful for the large Allen Americans family and blessed that I can be a small part of that family. My special thanks to the players and coaching staff who make sacrifices by being away from family throughout the season.

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