The Lake Erie Monsters started their five-game road trip off with a pair of contests over the weekend, taking on the Rochester Americans on Friday and the Hamilton Bulldogs on Saturday.
On Friday, the Monsters fell three goals behind in the first seven minutes of the opening frame, making for a tough 5-2 loss. Calvin Pickard started in net, but was relieved by Sami Aittokallio after the Americans scored two goals in their first six shots.
Dennis Everberg put Lake Erie on the board with his third goal of the season at 15:21 of the first period. Joey Hishon and Michael Schumacher assisted on the tally. The Americans quickly followed with another goal of their own, regaining their original three-point lead and making the deficit 4-1.
During a power play at 3:03 in the second, Hishon scored the only goal of the period, closing the gap on the scoreboard. Stefan Elliott and Max Noreau were credited with the assists.
Rochester’s last point came on an empty net try during the last minute of the contest, finalizing the game 5-2.
Pickard played two different stints on the night, accruing 44:23 minutes of total playing time and stopping 17-of-19 shots. Aittokallio made saves on seven-of-nine shots during his 13:32 in net for the Monsters.
Lake Erie came ready to rally the next night, beating Hamilton 2-1.
The score remained 0-0 through the first two periods until Hishon took the puck straight to the net on a breakaway at 0:28 in the third, scoring his second goal in two games. His weekend tallies make for nine goals so far this season for the Monsters and the 23-year-old forward now has three goals and two assists in his last four games.
The Bulldogs tied the score at 1-1 with a goal at the 7:54 mark of the frame.
The contest continued with back-and-forth scoring opportunities for the remainder of the period until Max Noreau darted a pass to Trevor Cheek after a faceoff. Cheek sniped the puck into Hamilton’s net at 16:45, and the Monsters held off the Bulldogs the rest of the way, securing a 2-1 win.
Pickard stopped 23-of-24 shots to take his first contest against the Bulldogs.
Jan. 16 at Chicago
Jan. 17 at Iowa
Jan. 18 at Iowa
Fort Wayne Komets
Fort Wayne’s three-game weekend ended with a 2-1 record after the club split a two-game series with Greenville on Friday and Saturday and defeated Gwinnett 4-3 on Sunday.
The Komets’ first visit to Greenville this season ended in a win. Garrett Meurs scored the final goal at 14:27 of the third period, capping off a 4-1 victory. Roman Will stopped 39-of-40 shots in net.
Goalie - COL
GAA: 2.57 | Sv%: .927
On Saturday, the Komets played Greenville again, falling 3-2 in a shootout. Meurs registered two shots. Will finished with 37-of-39 shots saved.
In the final contest of the three-game weekend, Fort Wayne extended its point streak to six games, defeating Gwinnett 4-3. Furthermore, the win put the Komets in first place for most road games won with a league-high 16.
Meurs had an assist on the lone second period goal for Fort Wayne. Will was unbeaten for the week, posting a save percentage of .962 after starting in net for both Greenville contests.
Sunday’s game was the only time Fort Wayne will visit Gwinnett this season.
On Jan. 13, Will was named ECHL goaltender of the week for his efforts. He went 1-0-1 and posted a 1.45 goals-against average and .962 save percentage from Jan. 5-11.
Chris Bigras (Owen Sound Attack): The Owen Sound Attack defeated the Belleville Bulls 4-1 on Saturday. Bigras finished with a plus-3 rating.
The Attack hosted the Sarnia Sting the following night at the Bayshore Arena, which was a rescheduled, make-up game from the previous Friday. Owen Sound lost 2-1.
Nick Magyar (Kitchener Rangers): The Kitchener Rangers hosted the Belleville Bulls on Friday, shutting them out 5-0. Magyar tallied one assist and finished with a plus-1 rating.
The Rangers traveled to Guleph for their final weekend contest on Sunday night, falling 4-2 to the Storm.
Spencer Martin (Mississauga Steelheads): Martin will miss the remainder of the season with a knee injury, suffered Dec. 21 against the Sudbury Wolves. The 19-year-old Ontario native, Colorado’s third-round pick (63rd overall) in the 2013 NHL Draft, appeared in 31 games for the Steelheads this season. He finished with a 15-13-1 record, 2.98 goals-against average and .921 save percentage.
Kyle Wood (North Bay Battalion): Both games last week finished in victories for the Battalion. North Bay defeated the Ottawa 67’s 6-3 last Tuesday, with Wood tallying an assist and finishing with a plus-2 rating in the victory.
The Battalion had a few days to rest before traveling to Saginaw on Saturday. They defeated the Spirit 3-2.
Julien Nantel (Rouyn-Noranda Huskies): Rouyn-Noranda hosted Rimouski on Thursday and fell 5-1.
The following night, the Huskies hosted Chicoutimi, defeating them 5-2. Nantel finished with two assists and a plus-two rating in the win.
For the third and final home game of the week, also against Chicoutimi, the Huskies finished strong with a 3-2 win.
Alexis Pepin (Val d'Or Foreurs): Pepin was traded from the Gatineau Olymipques to Val d’Or Foreurs last Wednesday. The 18-year-old Quebec native, Colorado’s fourth-round pick (114th overall) in the 2014 NHL Draft, had 14 points (10 goals, four assists) in 24 games for the Olympiques this year.
After the mid-season trade, Pepin proved his value, netting points in both of his first games with his new team. On Friday against Rimouski, Pepin tallied an assist in the 4-2 loss, and on the following night Pepin scored his first goal with the Foreurs.
Conner Bleackley (Red Deer Rebels): The Rebels came out victorious in both contests this weekend, winning at home and on the road. Red Deer traveled to Kootenay on Friday, beating the Ice 3-1.
The following night, the Rebels beat the Brandon Wheat Kings 6-1 at home. Bleackley tallied two assists in Saturday’s contest, and finished with a plus-2 rating.
Mason Geertsen (Vancouver Giants): The Vancouver Giants fell 4-1 to the Kelowna Rockets last Wednesday at Kelowna, but came out victorious a few nights later on Friday when the Giants beat the Medicine Hat Tigers 5-3 at home. Geertsen scored a goal and an assist in the victory. He received the second star of the game for Vancouver and finished with a plus-2 rating.
The following night the Giants traveled to Portland, falling 5-3 to the Winterhawks.
Will Butcher (University of Denver): The Pioneers dropped a 5-4 decision on Friday to Nebraska-Omaha at the Centurylink Center. Butcher picked up an assist on the first goal of the game.
In the second weekend contest against Nebraska-Omaha, the Pioneers fell 1-0, marking the first time Denver has been shutout in over two years.
Ben Storm (St. Cloud State University): St. Cloud State hosted Miami University in back-to-back games this past weekend. The Huskies took the series with Miami, defeating them 3-1 on Friday evening and 3-2 on Saturday. Storm finished the second game with 3 shots on goal.
Maximilian Pajpach (Tappara U20, Ligga Jr. A): Pajpach has yet to appear in a game for Tappara this season after suffering an offseason injury.
Anton Lindholm (Skelleftea AIK, SHL/Malmo Redhawks): Skelleftea beat Farjestad 3-2 last Tuesday, and then Lindholm’s team went on to beat Lulea Hockey 4-2 on Thursday and Linkoping HC 4-1 on Saturday. Lindholm has two assists through 21 games played this season.
Wilhelm Westlund (Djurgarden, SHL/Vita Hasten, Allsvenskan): Vita Hasten lost 3-2 to Karlskrona HK last Tuesday before falling 4-3 to BIK Karlskoga on Friday. Westlund has 11 points (two goals, nine assists) in 28 games this season.
Luke Walker (Graz99ers, Eishockey Liga): The Graz99ers fell 3-2 to HDD Telemach Olimpija Ljubijana last Tuesday.
On Friday, the 99ers beat HC TWK Innsbruck “Die Haie” 3-1, but fell 4-2 on Sunday to HC Bozen. Walker has 17 points (11 goals, six assists) in 35 games for the Graz99ers this season.
Jonas Holos (Lokomotiv Yaroslavl): Holos scored once in Lokomotiv’s 4-2 victory over HC Sochi last Tuesday.
In Monday’s 4-3 victory over Medvescak, Holos had one assist and finished plus-3. Holos has 14 points (six goals, eight assists) in 45 games this season.
Denis Parshin (Avangard Omsk): Parshin had two assists in Avangard’s 7-3 loss to Dynamo Msk on Thursday.
On Saturday, Avangard beat Ak Bars Kazan 3-2 and Parshin scored a goal.
Monday yielded a 2-1 victory for Parshin’s team over Avtomobilist. Parshin continues to lead his team in scoring with 46 points (22 goals, 24 assists) in 46 games this season.