ALLEN, TX – No matter what sport is involved you always want to be playing meaningful games at the end of the season and that is certainly the case for the Allen Americans.
It is hard to believe the last week of the season has arrived and the games against Wichita at home on Wednesday, at Tulsa on Friday and at Wichita on Sunday could have so much significance.
First and foremost is finishing on top in the Mountain Division. Allen needs four of the six available points over the final three games to clinch the division. It doesn’t matter how they get the four points, regulations wins, overtime wins or losses or shootout wins or losses, the Americans need to get four points to finish in first place over Colorado. After all, the Americans were seven points behind the Eagles just 10 days ago.
– Allen’s chance to win the Brabham Cup by having the best record in the entire ECHL and the #1 seed in the playoffs improved slightly last night as the current points leader, Toledo, lost at home to Fort Wayne 2-1. The Walleye’s lead over Allen has dwindled to two points (100-98) with three games to play.
Unfortunately for Allen fans under most scenarios if the teams are tied in points Toledo will win on the tiebreakers. Toledo’s remaining three games are at Fort Wayne on Wednesday, at Indy on Friday and then they close out the season against Indy at home on Saturday. Toledo has lost their last four games to give Allen a chance. Last night they had seven players out with injuries or playing in the AHL.
The only thing in the Americans control is getting six points over the last three games and then hope they get some help from Toledo. Since Allen plays their last game after the ECHL regular season has concluded (April 8), because of the rescheduled game with Wichita, the Americans will know going into that game if they have a chance for the #1 seed.
INDIVIDUAL STATISTICAL LEADERS:
– It has been a while since the statistical leaders have been included in the blog. What isn’t reflected in the list below is the impact of the addition of Wade MacLeod, Tyler Barnes and Alex Krushelnyski to the roster. If you would look at the last 10 games their names would be included a lot. Combined, they have played in 24 games with 24 points (14 goals, 10 assists). Below are the team leaders in various statistical categories with the league rank in parentheses:
116 – Chad Costello (1st)
72 – Greger Hanson (12th)
61 – Spencer Asuchak (29th)
34 – Greger Hanson (5th)
31 – Chad Costello (9th)
27 – Bryan Moore (21st)
85 – Chad Costello (1st)
38 – Greger Hanson (31st)
36 – Spencer Asuchak (38th)
+44 – Joel Chouinard (1st)
+25 – Bryan Moore (13th)
+23 – Dyson Stevenson (17th)
274 – Derek Mathers (1st)
138 – Bryan Moore (19th)
108 – Tanner Eberle (36th)
Shots On Goal:
238 – Greger Hanson (4th)
191 – Chad Costello (33rd)
157 – Bryan Moore (80th)
Points By Defensemen:
49 – David Makowski (4th)
41 – Joel Chouinard (10th)
35 – Eric Roy (22nd)
– Riley Gill is ranked #2 in GAA (2.28), #1 in save percentage (.933), #3 in wins (30), #1 in shutouts (5), #9 in minutes (2236) and #9 in saves (1276).
– In addition to leading the ECHL in overall points and assists, Chad Costello is #1 in power play points (47) and #1 in power play assists (38).
– Derek Mathers leads the league in penalty minutes with 274 which is 33 more than second place. Derek has 32 major penalties, second place has 20. According to the website, dropyourgloves.com, Derek has 30 fights this season which is eight more than anyone else in the league. His fight record is 18 wins, two losses and the rest draws.
– The list of players that are having the best goal scoring year of their professional career includes Greger Hanson (35 goals), Spencer Asuchak (25), Bryan Moore (27), Joel Chouinard (10), Dyson Stevenson (10) and Derek Mathers (7).
Here is how Allen ranks in the ECHL in most every category the league tracks. The list shows the category, the rank, and the raw number. Some numbers are average per game.
League Standings: #2 (46-17-4-2)
Penalty Minutes: #1 (1411)
Record When Scoring First: #2 (37-2-2-1)
Overall Power Play %: #3 (23.9%)
Home Power Play %: #2 (26.5%)
Road Power Play %: #5 (21.0%)
Overall Penalty Kill %: #4 (84.7%)
Home Penalty Kill %: #15 (82.8%)
Road Penalty Kill %: #2 (86.7%)
Shorthanded Goals For: #9 (9)
Shorthanded Goals Against: #24 (12)
Goals Scored Per Game: #2 (4.04)
Goals Against Per Game: #2 (2.87)
Shots For Per Game: #21 (31.33)
Shots Against Per Game: #23 (34.80)
Attendance: #11 (4340)
– It is amazing to look at the stats above and realize how far this team has come since the end of November when the Americans were in last place in the division. The record since that time is 40-6-4-2. The goal differential has gone from -7 to +81. The team plus/minus has gone from -8 to +289. The power play percentage has improved from 7.8% to 23.9%.
DID YOU KNOW: The Allen Americans are well on their way to a regular season winning percentage over .700. It would be only the third time the Americans have accomplished that feat in their eight years as a franchise. Regular season winning percentage isn’t a great predictor of playoff success. Allen has won the last two Kelly Cups with the lowest regular season winning percentage in team history (.618) and the highest percentage in team history (.736). Here is the winning percentage for each season with the playoff results.
2009-10: .695 (lost in finals)
2010-11: .735 (lost in round 3)
2011-12: .659 (lost in round 1)
2012-13: .659 (won championship)
2013-14: .629 (won championship)
2014-15: .736 (won championship)
2015-16: .618 (won championship)
2016-17: .710 (???????????????) – with three games remaining