ALLEN, TX – The Allen Americans won their final preseason game last night with a 3-2 victory in a rematch with the Kansas City Mavericks. The game was very different from Friday night which had a lot of hitting, fisticuffs and power play goals.

Friday night, there were 28 penalties and three of the four goals came on the power play. Last night there were just eight penalties called in the game with none in the third period. Each team went 0-4 on the power play.

– Goal scorers for the Americans were Olivier Archambault, Alex Schoenborn, and Bryan Moore.

– I had a chance to check in with coach Steve Martinson after the game and just like after the game on Friday night he said he liked a lot more of what he saw in the game than he didn’t like. He specifically mentioned the play of Riley Gill who looked sharp in stopping 35 of 37 shots. Martinson also talked about the line combination of Lessard-Pochiro-Archambault and how they used their speed coming into the offensive zone and created numerous opportunities. Martinson also liked the play of captain Joel Chouinard who was playing in his first preseason game and led the team with two assists and a plus/minus of +2.

– Allen scored first in both preseason games but could not hold onto those leads. Last night the Americans had a 2-0 lead until midway through the third period. Kansas City scored two goals to draw even with just over two minutes remaining in the game. To their credit, the Americans came back with the game-winner just 47 seconds after the Mavericks tied the score 2-2 when Bryan Moore deflected a shot from the point by Mike Gunn.

OTHER COMMENTS

– It will be an important week for the Americans as training camp comes to a close and coach Martinson determines what the final roster looks like. The opening day roster is due to the league office Wednesday afternoon, and the team will leave Wednesday for Rapid City where they open the season on Friday and Saturday. Some tough decisions to be made by Martinson in the next couple of days.

– It has been transportation hell for Spencer Asuchak on his journey to Allen. He started out on Wednesday in Zvolen, Slovakia and traveled to Vienna, Austria then to Frankfurt Germany, then to Vancouver then to Kamloops, British Columbia to pack up his truck and head to Allen in time for practice on Monday.

According to Spencer, the total would be 16 hours of flight time and 46 hours of driving time in five days. So he arrived home Wednesday night, spent Thursday with his family and friends and then left for Allen on Friday. When I asked why he didn’t stay at home a little longer, he said, “I thought about staying longer, but I don’t want to miss practice on Monday.”  Unbeknownst to Spencer, his transportation hell was just beginning when left home Friday afternoon headed for Allen. Here is the next chapter in his own words:

Here is the next chapter in his own words:

“I was about an hour past Spokane, Washington at around 10:00 pm and a deer jumped right in front of my truck. I was going 60-70 miles per hour. It felt like what I would imagine getting hit by Arseneau would be like (haha). It completely blew up the right front of my truck. I pulled over and the guy behind me stopped to see if I was okay. We couldn’t get the truck to start and the nearest tow truck was a two-hour wait. So I looked up the closest motel and there was one two miles away. So the guy that stopped to help me pushed me on the side of the road until we got to the motel. Pretty awesome of him to help me like that. Then on Saturday morning, I called the tow truck and he towed me back to Spokane. I took an Uber from the body shop to the airport, rented a car, drove back to my truck to grab all my stuff and got back on the road to Allen. I am completely fine and still plan on being at practice on Monday.”

Talk about above and beyond the call of duty, it amazing what Spencer has put himself through the last five days and why he is so loved in Allen by fans and teammates alike. He will arrive in Allen just in time to get on the bus on Wednesday for the 17-hour trip to Rapid City. At least he doesn’t have to drive.

The aftermath of the deer encounter

Chad Costello has his knee surgery tomorrow (Monday). I know his many fans in Allen are sending their thoughts and prayers that all goes well and he will be on the road to a quick recovery.

– Congratulations to Mathieu Aubin and his fiance Natalie who just recently got engaged. Natalie is the one who is responsible for Mathieu playing in Allen. She took a job in the D/FW area, and that gave the Americans the chance to recruit Aubin which I am sure was not a tough sell.

DID YOU KNOW: This will be the first time since joining the ECHL that the Allen Americans will open the season on the road. Opening at home the last three season has not been that productive so maybe opening on the road, where the guys spend a lot of time together, will be a good omen. Here are the results of the last three season openers which were all played at the Allen Event Center. All of these opening night games are memorable for different reasons.

2014-15 – a 9-6 loss to Tulsa, Greger Hanson had a hat trick, and Aaron Dell gave up seven goals. It was Dell’s only regulation loss in the 12 games he played for Allen that season. By the end of January, he was in the AHL on his way the NHL.

2015-16 – a 2-1 loss to Quad City, Allen’s lone goal was scored by Garrett Clarke with assists to Justin Courtnall and Joel Rumpel.

2016-17 – a 6-3 win over Missouri, Kale Kerbashian had two goals, and Riley Gill was peppered with 47 shots.

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