ALLEN, TX – The Allen Americans lost to the Tulsa Oilers for the third day in a row Sunday afternoon by a score of 4-3 in overtime. A weekend that started with the promise of moving into first place in the division could not have gone any worse. It could have been worse as Eric Roy scored with 30 seconds remaining yesterday to send the game to overtime and salvage a single point for the Americans.

– The Americans have now lost four games in a row after winning the first three games of the season. Their record is 3-2-2-0 which has them in fourth place in the Mountain Division with eight points.

– Allen gave up the first goal in all three games this weekend and never once had the lead in any of the games. They were outscored 10-6, were beat on special teams and even had fewer penalty minutes than Tulsa. Allen had 34 penalty minutes while Tulsa had 48. Special teams cost the Americans as the power play was 2-12 (16.7%) which isn’t all that bad until you realize the power play scored two goals but gave up three shorthanded goals.

– In the game yesterday Tulsa had a 2-0 lead by the midpoint of the first period on a power-play goal and a shorthanded goal and Allen could never recover. Jeremy Brodeur, making his professional start on his 21st birthday kept the Americans in the game as he was peppered with 50 shots on goal by the Oilers. He certainly deserved a better fate. On the game-winning overtime goal, Jeremy made two stops on the same play before Adam Pleskach once again beat Allen.

– Props to Tulsa goalie, rookie Devin Williams, who played in all three games this weekend and stopped 113 of 119 shots for a save percentage of .950. Williams also played the third period in a game on Wednesday and stopped all four shots he faced.  The summary for the week includes playing four games in five days, three wins, a no goal relief appearance, a shutout and a save percentage for the week of .951. There is little doubt Williams will be the ECHL goalie of the week, and it is well deserved.

– Goal scorers for Allen were Spencer Asuchak (2), Jaynen Rissling (1), and Eric Roy (2). The Roy goal to tie the score 3-3 with 30 seconds left in the game was very much like the Adam Pleskach game-winner on Saturday. Eric was in the corner almost on the goal line and just threw the puck at the net and it went in.

– Things don’t get any easier for the Americans as they get ready to play Utah at home on Wednesday. The team will be missing a bunch of players including both of their goalies as Stephon Williams was recalled to San Jose yesterday and Riley Gill is injured. It will be Brodeur in goal on Wednesday with an EBUG (emergency back up goalie) on the bench. David Makowski will be serving the last of his four-game suspension and the two players on 21-day IR (Mathieu Aubin & Miles Liberati) aren’t eligible to play until Sunday. Bryan Moore and Olivier Archambault are still in San Jose.

– Everyone knows Steve Martinson is not very patient when the team is not playing up to its potential and even with the missing players a four-game losing streak is not acceptable. You often hear coach Martinson say at times like these your best players have to be your best players which means the most experienced (higher paid) players need to lead the team by contributing more. Sure the team was tired after playing three days in a row but as Martinson pointed out after the game, Tulsa was playing their fourth game in five days so no excuses there. Tulsa had the fresher legs, more energy, and more stamina. Martinson also commented that he felt the team was not hard enough to play against and if that is the case the Americans need to score more.

– If you have followed this team since Martinson’s arrival you know at times like these he tends to make moves to improve the team. He could wait and see how things work out when he gets some players back that are not currently in the lineup or he could try and improve the team through a trade. You just never know what kind of conversation coach Martinson will be having with general manager Martinson this morning while the team has the day off.

– The Allen loss to Tulsa was the only Mountain Division action yesterday but around the ECHL Reading beat Adirondack 9-4 to improve their record to 4-0-0-0. The Royals join the idle Wichita Thunder (6-0-0-0) and South Carolina Stingrays (4-0-0-0) as the only undefeated teams in the ECHL. Reading and South Carolina will square off for two games in South Carolina on November 7th & 8th.

– Here are the current Mountain Division standings with games played in parentheses:

12 points – Wichita (6 games)
12 points – Colorado (7 games)
9 points – Tulsa (8 games)
8 points – Allen (7 games)
7 points – Idaho (7 games)
6 points – Utah (8 games)
2 points – Rapid City (6 games)

Other Comments

–  I had a conversation with some of the off-ice officials at the game last night that you might find interesting concerning the definition of a shot on goal. This subject has been a topic of conversation over the years as the explanation was not as simple as one might think. Here was is the official definition from last season of a shot on goal with some clarifications:

“A shot on goal occurs when an attempt by an attacking player, with intent to score a goal, either results in a goal or would have entered the goal if not stopped by the goaltender.”

– Clearing or stray passes that end up on goal, but were not taken with an intent to score, are not considered shots.
– Any effort resulting in a goal is considered to be a shot on goal.
– Attempts that hit only the crossbar or goalpost, or that are blocked by a forward or defenseman before reaching the net are not considered shots.
– Regardless of where the puck is shot, it is deemed a valid shot if it is a legitimate effort or attempt at scoring by the player taking the shot. For example, a bank shot from behind the net can be a shot on goal.
– Any penalty shot is considered a shot on goal regardless of whether the attacking player actually puts a shot on net.
– In a shootout, the winning team is credited with one additional shot on goal, though this shot is not credited to any player in particular.

The definition above has been changed for the 2017-18 season and the concept of intent has been deleted. The NHL changed the definition and the other leagues have adopted the change.

This season, for the first time, clearing or stray passes that end up on goal will be counted as a shot. The new rule is much more straight-forward with no room for judgment other than whether the puck would have gone in the goal.

The bottom line is there will be more shots on goal recorded this year than in the past because of this change in definition. Something that should make everyone happy, especially goalies who get judged on save percentage. I did a quick calculation and the average shots on goal are up 1.08 (3.4%) per game thus far this season compared to last season.

Auction Results

– The Halloween jersey auction turned out to be a big success. The team replaced the after the game live auction with an online auction through a company called BidPal. This process will only grow as more fans become familiar with BidPal and signup to participate. There are many benefits from using an online auction with one of the biggest being you don’t have to be in attendance at the game to bid. You can bid from anywhere. Here are the results from the Halloween jersey auction:

Photo Courtesy: Allen Americans

$650 – Spencer Asuchak
$605 – Mike Gunn
$506 – Jeremy Brodeur
$505 – Miles Liberati
$455 – Tanner Eberle
$450 – Zach Hall
$440 – Casey Pierro-Zabotel
$430 – Josh Thrower
$430 – Vincent Arseneau
$430 – Riley Gill
$414 – K9 Biscuit
$380 – David Makowski
$369 – Dalton Thrower
$365 – Alex Schoenborn
$354 – Bryan Moore
$330 – Joel Chouinard
$330 – Jonathan Lessard
$330 – Zach Pochiro
$325 – Eric Roy
$324 – Stephon Williams
$324 – Mathieu Aubin
$319 – Connor Reilly
$309 – Jaynen Rissling
$305 – Peter MacArthur
$305 – Olivier Archambault
$284 – Thomas Hodges

DID YOU KNOW: During November, Allen plays 12 games, six at home and six on the road. Other than one game in Wichita on Friday the Americans will be at home from November 1st until November 18th when they again play in Wichita. The last part of the month Allen has all road games. They will play at home on November 12th and then have all road games until December 1st.

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