ALLEN, Texas – The Allen Americans avenged their only loss of the season with a 4-1 win over the Tulsa Oilers last night before a crowd of 1912 at the Allen Event Center. The Americans improved their record to 3-1-0-0 and sit atop the Mountain Division standings with six points.
Once again, Allen got off to a good start scoring the only goal of the first period when Joe Garreffa found himself alone with the puck in the slot and made no mistake burying his second goal of the season.
Tulsa tied the score early in the second period on a power-play goal but shortly started giving Allen gifts. Tulsa tough guy Mike McKee took three straight minor penalties, and it was the turning point of the game. After failing on the first two power-play opportunities, the Americans cashed in on the third. Jesse Mychan, who McKee had cross-checked in the face for one of his three penalties, got the last laugh scoring a power-play goal with 99 seconds left in the second period to give Allen a 2-1 lead.
Tulsa put pressure on Allen in the third period after the Americans took a 3-1 lead, but goalie Zach Sawchenko came up big time and time again, stopping all 17 Tulsa shots and 34 of 35 shots in the game. Sawchenko has started two games for the Americans and won them both, allowing just three goals. His GAA is 1.50, and his save percentage is .957.
Goal scorers for Allen were Joe Garreffa (2), Jake McGrew (3), and Jesse Mychan (3 & 4). Matt Register had two more assists and is now in a four-way tie for the most assists in the ECHL with four.
Allen’s power play was 1-4 last night and is now 2-14 (14.3%) on the season. The power play looked good last night, creating opportunities even though they only scored once. I look for the power play to breakout soon.
It is only four games into the season, but the hallmark of this team is its depth.
Here is the proof.
Allen is second in the ECHL in goals scored with 15. If you look at Allen’s individual stats, four players are tied for the lead but have just four points. Six players have three points, and three players have two points. Many teams say scoring can come from any of the four lines, but the Americans’ stats prove it.
- Three of the top 12 ECHL rookies in scoring are from the Allen Americans (Garreffa. McGrew, Kielly)
- Three of the top nine ECHL defensemen in scoring are from the Allen Americans (Register, Lancaster, Ottenbreit)
Previewing the Rematch
More of the same would be the key to victory in the rematch tonight. Allen had a good start, scored first, out-shot Tulsa for most of the game, had great goalie play, and scored a power-play goal.
The downside was allowing 17 third-period shots, including several grade-A opportunities. Allen didn’t surrender any third-period goals because of the play of Sawchenko. The penalty kill was okay (1-3) and is only 84.6% (2-13) on the season. Two areas to improve upon tonight.
The referee tonight will be #4 Sean MacFarlane, who was also the referee last night.
– South Carolina goalie Zach Fucale was recalled by the Washington Capitals yesterday. This was the first of a series of NHL/AHL contracted players currently assigned to ECHL teams being recalled to attend NHL camps. With NHL teams being required to carry three goalies this season, they will most likely get recalled.
– Three ECHL teams remain undefeated. Florida is 5-0, Indy 4-0, and Wichita is 2-0. Florida continues to be the class of the league. In five games, the Everblades have scored 25 goals and allowed just seven. They are first in average goals scored (5.00) and first in average goals (1.40).
– There are just three ECHL games scheduled today, with Allen the only one playing a night game. Greenville is at South Carolina (3:05 pm EST), Indy is at Wheeling (4:10 pm EST), and Tulsa is at Allen (7:05 pm CST).
– Saturday night COVID restricted ECHL attendance with season average in parenthesis:
3915 – Florida (3527)
2210 – Greenville (1921)
2169 – Kansas City (2169)
1912 – Allen (1942)
1636 – Indy (1874)
The ECHL average last night was 2368. After 24 games, the overall average is 2340.
Did You Know?
Steve Martinson has coached in four leagues during his 25-year coaching career. He has won championships in all of them:
Taylor Cup – won five championships with the San Diego Gulls (West Coast Hockey League)
Colonial Cup – won once in three seasons with the Rockford IceHogs (United Hockey League)
Presidents’ Cup – won twice in two seasons with Allen Americans (Central Hockey League)
Kelly Cup – won two Kelly Cups with the Allen Americans (ECHL)
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