Monday, March 29, 2010 - - PLAYOFF EDITION
CENTRAL HOCKEY LEAGUE HEADLINES
Mudbugs Head Home with Golden Opportunity
After taking both games at the Budweiser Events Center, the Bossier-Shreveport Mudbugs head home for three straight games needing to win two of three of those contests to advance to the Northern Conference Finals for the first time since 2006 when they made it all the way to the Ray Miron Presidents’ Cup Finals before losing to Laredo. The ‘Bugs won the only regular season meeting versus the Eagles (4-3 in OT on January 30) and overall ended the regular season with four straight home wins. Colorado went 3-2-2 in their final seven road games during the regular season. In both games this past weekend, the Eagles scored the first goal of the game.
BOS/COL By the Numbers:
4-3 – The score of both of Bossier-Shreveport’s wins in the series and the score of five of the past six games in the post-season between the two teams. In total, 10 of the past 11 playoff games with the Mudbugs and Eagles have been decided by one goal.
.927- The save percentage of Mudbugs goaltender John DeCaro who had stopped 38 of 41 shots before being removed from Game Two with an apparent lower-body injury. DeCaro is expected to miss some time as Ken Carroll now takes over as the ‘Bugs everyday goaltender.
7- The number of minor penalties called against the Mudbugs in the two games thus far accounting for the fewest penalty minutes of any team in the playoffs (14 minutes). The Eagles have taken advantage going 3 for 6 with the man advantage.
Rush Show Little Rust in Gaining 2-0 Lead
The Rapid City Rush head home with a commanding 2-0 series lead over the Mavericks and dating back to regular season have won all seven meetings versus the Mavs. Rapid City had a week off before meeting the Mavericks on Saturday night, while Missouri had played three games winning their best-of-3 series versus Mississippi. The Rush are in just their second year as a franchise while the Mavericks were a new addition to the CHL at the beginning of this season. Rush forward Scott Wray has scored the game winning goal in each of the first two games thus far.
MIZ/RPD By the Numbers:
0 for 10- The Missouri Mavericks on the power play so far in the series. In Game Two, the Rush stopped all seven shorthanded situations versus the Mavs.
+4- The Rush’s goal differential in the third period of the first two games as they have outscored the Mavericks 5-1 in the final frame. The first two periods of the two games saw Rapid City outscore Missouri 2-1.
17- The number shots that Rapid City goaltender Danny Battochio stopped in a perfect third period of the Rush’s 2-1 win on Sunday night in Missouri. So far in two games, the reigning CHL Rookie of the Year has stopped 72 of 74 shots (.973 save percentage).
Defending Champs Flex Muscle Versus Governors’ Cup Champs
The Texas Brahmas come to play in conference semifinals as they have won 10 straight games in the conference semifinals over the past two playoffs. Texas swept away the Bossier-Shreveport Mudbugs in 2008 and then won in a sweep last season over the Rio Grande Valley Killer Bees. This season being no different as the Brahmas are ahead two games against the Governors’ Cup Champion Odessa Jackalopes with a win that included a five-goal third period comeback win on Friday. Texas forward Jordan Cameron leads all skaters in the post-season with seven points (1-6=7).
TEX/ODE By the Numbers:
6- After Saturday’s GWG at Odessa, the number of playoff game winners that Texas forward Tyler Skworchinski has scored in his CHL career. Last year, Skworchinski scored five game winning goals in the Brahmas run to the championship.
7- The current post-season win streak of Texas goaltender Brett Jaeger who has won four straight games in this year’s playoffs and finished last year’s championship run with three straight wins. In those seven wins, Jaeger as allowed just 15 goals. This year, he is carrying a 1.82 goals against average.
3- The number of Odessa scores that forward Dominic Leveille has had a hand in so far in the series. Leveille had six goals and six assists in 13 games during last year’s post-season for the Jacks.
Even Steven for Bucks and Americans Heading to Laredo
The Laredo Bucks and Allen Americans have played a very even two games thus far with each team winning once. Both teams came from behind to win as the series now shifts to Laredo for three straight games. Laredo went 8-1-3 at the Laredo Energy Arena down the stretch but dating back to two seasons ago have lost four straight home playoff games (three last year to Odessa and Game Seven of the Southern Conference Finals versus Arizona in 2008). So far, each team that has scored the first goal in the series has lost the game.
LAR/ALN By the Numbers:
5-0- The goal differential between the two teams in the second period of the first two games so far. Allen has tallied five goals and shutout the Bucks but in the third period, the roles are reversed as Laredo has outscored the Americans 3-0 in the final frame.
40- The average number of combined penalty minutes per game for the teams in the series so far making it easily the most cantankerous series to date.
1 for 22- The combined showing on the power play for the two teams as Allen is 1 for 10 and Laredo is 0 for 12 through two games of the series.
-Over the past two playoff seasons, 88% of the series that had a team jump out to a 2-0 lead ended with that team winning the series. The lone exception was last year’s Odessa/Laredo series where the Bucks won the first two games, both in Odessa, but then dropped four straight to lose the series. In all, eight of the nine series where a team led 2-0 finished with that team advancing and in five of the eight occasions, the series finished with a sweep. Rapid City, Bossier-Shreveport and Texas all have 2-0 series leads in this year’s playoffs.
-Colorado forward Ed McGrane, the league’s regular season goal scoring champion, has tallied in each of the first two playoff games for the Eagles giving him 23 goals in his last 18 games dating back to the regular season. McGrane led the Eagles goal scoring charge last season with 13 scores (Colorado advanced to the President’s Cup Finals a year ago).
-Texas is 15-2 at home over the past two playoff seasons at the NYTEX Sports Centre. In each of the last two post-seasons, the Brahmas have lost just once per playoff season (2008 to Colorado and 2009 to Odessa).
-Missouri’s duo of Bill Vandermeer and Brett Hammond have each scored three goal in the playoffs tying them for second in the league behind Texas’ Tyler Skworchinski who has four scores.