After a week in the Southern Professional Hockey League which resembled more soap opera than sport, it’s nice to get the boys back on the ice. Let’s play hockey!
Title Belt Game: Huntsville Havoc at Knoxville Ice Bears
- Our SPHL Game of the Week. Look for live tweets and coverage on Twitter at @SPHLGameNight
- First meeting this season between the teams. Last season, Huntsville won seven of nine meetings. Knoxville leads the all-time series 76-37-17.
- Last week, the Havoc scored six of their 11 goals during the second period at Peoria.
- Both the Havoc and Ice Bears scored three power play goals over the opening weekend.
- Knoxville rookie Jake Rivera and his Huntsville counterpart Jordan Wood lead all newcomers in goals with two.
Pensacola Ice Flyers at Columbus Cottonmouths
- Pensacola won last season’s series with a 3-2-1 record.
- Last week, the President’s Cup champs stumbled out of the gate, mustering only a single point against the Fayetteville FireAntz
- Cottonmouths forward Riley Spraggs leads all rookies with three assists.
- Pensacola goaltender John McLean was placed on the 14-day IR. Drew Fielding, who played 25 games with the ECHL Adirondack Thunder, will take his place on the roster.
- Lukas Hafner, a cousin of former Columbus defenseman Rusty Hafner, was signed this week to replace goaltender Alex Larson
Mississippi RiverKings at Fayetteville FireAntz
- The FireAntz won last season’s series with the RiverKings with a 3-0-1 record.
- Fayetteville goaltender Sean Bonar is third in goals against average with 1.92.
- Riverkings netminder Alex Caffi has the league’s highest save percentage with .971.
- The Antz traded defenseman Kyllian Kirkwood to the Evansville Thunderbolts for undisclosed terms.
- Currently, Fayetteville has the league’s lone shorthanded goal – scored by Evan Dixon
Peoria Rivermen at Macon Mayhem
- In the regular season, the Rivermen won all five games against the Mayhem and won their first round series, two games to one after dropping the first game in Macon.
- Both teams have a 25.0% power play success rate this season.
- Peoria will debut two new netminders after releasing both Storm Phaneuf and Shannon Szabados. Matt Grogan and Tyler Green are the new goaltenders for the Rivermen.
- The Mayhem placed forward Matt Johnson on the 21-day IR. Johnson is replaced on the roster by defenseman Chris Joseph. Joseph appeared in 20 games with Huntsville last season.
Roanoke Rail Yard Dawgs at Evansville Thunderbolts
- First ever professional hockey game between teams from the two cities.
- Both teams have scored one power play goal last weekend.
- In addition to the acquisition of Kirkwood, the Bolts signed forwards Mike Radisa and Tommy Veilleux to three-game tryouts.
- The Dawgs have allowed three power play goals this season.
- Mississippi at Fayetteville – 7:30 ET
- Peoria at Macon – 7:35 ET
- Knoxville at Huntsville – 7:00 CT
- Columbus at Pensacola – 7:05 CT
- Roanoke at Evansville – 7:15 CT