Monday, March 2nd, 2009
CENTRAL HOCKEY LEAGUE HEADLINES
1) Two Down, Two to Go
2) Looking for Nine
3) Defending Champs Making Some Noise
1- Two of the CHL’s four divisions have been locked up with Odessa and Colorado both sewing things up last week. The Eagles did so on Saturday night earning a point in their 4-3 shootout loss at Mississippi. The win gave them the Northwest Division for the sixth time in as many seasons. The Other two divisions, the Northeast and the Southeast, look to be taking much different paths with the Southeast appearing to be just a formality for the Texas Brahmas who have a 13 point lead over the Laredo Bucks with just 10 games remaining for Laredo. In the Northeast, three teams are within six points of each other with Mississippi leading the way with 77 points, Bossier-Shreveport sitting second with 74 points and Oklahoma City in third with 71 points.
2- The Mississippi RiverKings (37-14-3) have won eight straight games and will look for number nine-in-a-row on Tuesday night when they play at the Bossier-Shreveport Mudbugs (35-15-4). The game has a true four-point swing implication with the RiverKings leading the Mudbugs in the Northeast Division by three points. So far this season, the Mudbugs have beaten Mississippi five times in six games and over the last three weeks of the season, the two rivals will become very familiar with each other as then play six times counting Tuesday’s showdown. The ‘Kings have averaged five goals per game during their eight game win streak and have posted an amazing 27-6-3 mark since November 29th.
3- The Arizona Sundogs (24-28-4) have had a rollercoaster of a season and at times it appeared they may not even make it into the post-season for a chance to defend their Ray Miron President’s Cup title but on their recently completed South Texas road trip, the Sundogs showed their top form posting points in three of the four games (2-1-1) including earning three of a possible four points in Laredo. Goaltender Marco Emond won each of his last two starts allowing three goals to Laredo on Saturday and shutting out Corpus Christi on Friday, 1-0 in a shootout. Offensively, Adam Perry and Dwayne Hay each have five points in their last five games. In what could be a huge series, the Sundogs host the Rio Grande Valley Killer Bees (27-22-5) three times this week starting on Wednesday night.
INSIDE THE NUMBERS
9-3-0 The New Mexico Scorpions record this season when playing on the road on Saturday nights…This week, the suddenly hot Scorpions play at Oklahoma City on Saturday looking for a chance for their 10th Saturday night road win of the season
83 The league-leading point total of Odessa’s Sebastien Thinel who has 34 goals and 49 assists…His 34 goals are tied for the league lead as are his 18 power play goals…Sitting second in the league in scoring is Thinel’s teammate Dominic Leveille who has 74 points
5 The number of Wichita Thunder players that have been placed on season-ending injured reserve…forward Stan Yanchishyn joined the list after getting injured in Rapid City over the weekend…He accompanies Tim Boron, Connor MacDonald, Greg Cassista and Mike Batovanja as played who have had their seasons cut short due to injury
14 The number of consecutive home wins the Texas Brahmas have enjoyed at the NYTEX Sports Centre…This week, Texas hosts Corpus Christi on Friday night looking to reach 15 straight wins at home
:45 The amount of time it took the Amarillo Gorillas to erase a 3-0 deficit on Saturday night in Odessa…The three goal outburst in less than a minute helped push the Gorillas to a 6-5 comeback win…Warren Galloway, Austin Sutter and John Snowden scored the three goals for Amarillo
-New Mexico’s Chris Robertson has five goals and three assists in his last three games and is coming off a 17 point 97-10=17) month of February
-A trio of Colorado Eagles are having quite a race to lead the league in plus/minus as defenseman Aaron Schneekloth currently leads the way with a +31 rating…He is followed by teammates Kevin Ulanski (+29) and Riley Nelson (+25)
-Mississippi goaltender Kevin Beech is just 1-3-0 on the season versus the Bossier-Shreveport Mudbugs but is 29-7-3 versus the rest of the league leading all goaltenders with 30 and ranking fourth with a 2.40 goals against average
-Laredo rookie Darryl Smith lead the CHL with 11 goals scored during the month of February…His 34 goals are tied for the league lead and his 63 points are tops among all rookies