ALLEN, TX – There were 4816 fans at the Allen Event Center last night to watch the Allen Americans take on the Colorado Eagles and they witnessed a game so unique that it had never happened before in the history of the franchise.
In seven years, Allen has never lost a game by a score of 1-0. A goalie duel broke out between Allen goalie Riley Gill, the two time Kelly Cup champion and former Allen goalie, Eric Levine, who has come into his own after playing for 10 different teams in the last three years. The two combined to stop 61 of 62 shots with many of them being of the spectacular variety. Unfortunately for Allen fans, the lone goal was scored by Colorado to give them a 1-0 victory.
The game was unique, distinctive, noteworthy, peculiar in many ways. Here are a few examples:
– The two leading teams in the ECHL in penalty minutes had a combined total of just 12 minutes in penalties. It was a little one sided with Allen being called for five penalties and Colorado just one. Neither team scored on the power play as Allen was 0-1 and Colorado was 0-4.
– The lone goal was scored when goalie Riley Gill went behind the goal to play the puck and his stick got caught in the gap between the boards where the Zamboni comes on the ice. He got back to the goal without his stick but in the scramble that ensued the Eagles scored.
– The goal scorer for Colorado was the diminutive Johnny Lazo (5′ 6″ 170 pounds) who was playing in his first game with the Eagles having started the season in Italy.
– Colorado dominated the second period out shooting Allen 15-6 but could not score.
– Allen dominated the third period out shooting Colorado 15-4 despite killing off a four minute high sticking penalty but could not score.
– It was the first game all season (five games) between Allen and Colorado when there has not been a fight. There were 20 fighting majors in the first four games.
– The teams will take the day off today before a rematch on Sunday at 4:05 pm.
– The Sin Bin’s Kimberly Sauer has a photo gallery of last night’s game, which you can look at here: https://thesinbin.net/photos-allen-americans-vs-colorado-eagles-010816/
STEVE MARTINSON’S POST GAME COMMENTS:
– It is tough when you give up one goal and lose a game. We had good chances including a couple of posts and a cross bar. I thought we deserved a better fate tonight but it wasn’t to be. I am going to stay positive. I thought that was a game we could have won. You can’t be down on your players when they only give up one goal.
– The second period we didn’t play real good. I don’t think we are carrying the puck through the middle of the ice like we can so we have not been creating plays on the rush. We miss guys like Pierro-Zabotel, King, Doremus, and King in the center.
– I thought Halabi played well for his first game. He had some good hits and almost scored on the breakaway coming out of the penalty box. He challenged a couple of guys but they are missing some players so his challenge wasn’t accepted. If Colorado had a full line up things might have been a little different.
– Colorado is a team that works hard and skates. There third line doesn’t score much but they skate. Sometimes we don’t skate hard enough like in the second period. Guys wanted to make plays by getting behind people and wait for the puck rather than climbing the ladder, making short passes, carrying the puck and working for opportunities.
– I don’t think we were great tonight but I also don’t think we were bad. It is disappointing to come out at home and not score a goal. That is painful.
– We just have to keep grinding and get what we can get until we get some guys back in the lineup. I don’t think the new guys are hurting us, we just don’t have much scoring depth. It is possible Pierro-Zabotel could be ready by next weekend but he has had his arm in a sling for six weeks so he has to get his strength back. King may be available next weekend as well.
– Between injuries, call ups and guys no longer playing we aren’t the same team as we were. You can’t wave a magic wand and replace the guys that you lose. We have some guys interested in joining the team but we don’t have any room right now. There are some things that could happen but we need to play as hard as we can with the line up we have. We are not going to be the team we were at the beginning of the year but that doesn’t mean we won’t be that team again in the future.
– It would be nice to put some wins together at home. Our road record is pretty good considering the travel and the line up we have.
– The Americans have now lost four straight home games but all teams go through these streaks. Remember, last season Allen lost eight straight homes games and didn’t win at home the entire month of February. The concerning part of the four game home losing streak is the fact the Americans have only managed to score a total four goals in the four games.
– It was great to see Joel Rumpel back on the ice even if it was in a back up role. It won’t be long before he gets a start.
– Had the chance to talk briefly with Eric Levine after his great performance which earned him the #1 star of the game. He is very thankful for the opportunity with the Eagles and is certainly making the most of his playing time. Since joining the Eagles in early December, Eric has played in eight games and has a record of 6-2. He has three shutouts in the eight games. His GAA and save percentage for the month of December was outstanding at 1.21 and .955. He has outdone himself in January with a GAA of 0.67 and a save percentage of .976.
– In other action last night in the Central Division, Tulsa beat Wichita 2-1 in a shootout and Missouri lost to Rapid City in overtime so Allen was the only team in the division that didn’t earn at least point. Here are the current standings with games played in parentheses:
56 points: Missouri (32 games)
39 points: Allen (34 games)
34 points Tulsa (30 games)
23 points Wichita (23 games)
– Yesterday was a big day for Jamie Schaafsma. On the ice he had a goal and two assists and was named the #2 star of the game as he led the Fort Wayne Komets to a 7-4 win over Quad City. You can read Anna Headley’s recap of the game, here: https://thesinbin.net/komets-streak-past-mallards/. The first place Komets now have a three point lead over Quad City (38-35). Off the ice Jamie and Nicole announced they are expecting their third child in July. Congrats!
– Here is an introduction video that Tommy Daniels did with Reid Halabi courtesy of the Allen Americans:
DID YOU KNOW: In the seven year history of the Allen Americans franchise they have been in 434 regular season games with just two ending with a score of 1-0. Prior to last night the only other 1-0 game was the very first game in team history, October 16, 2009. It was a victory in Arizona and the lone goal was a power play goal scored by Christian Gaudet with assists by Bruce Graham and Nino Musitelli. Charlie Effinger got the shutout for the Americans.