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Amerks off to hot start, return home Friday

Rochester has earned 6 of 8 possible points so far this season

by Rochester Americans @AmerksHockey / Sabres.com

The Rochester Americans earned four of a possible six points this past weekend and have claimed six points overall through their first four games of the 2019-20 campaign. All four contests have been one-goal games, including a pair of wins beyond regulation.

The Amerks are among just six teams in the AHL this season to earn a win in the extra session, but are the only club to take the extra point in both games.

Scoring leaders

Player GP G A PTS
1. Tage Thompson 4 2 3 5
2. Zach Redmond 3 1 3 4
3. Rasmus Asplund 4 0 2 2
Jacob Bryson 4 0 2 2
Remi Elie 4 1 1 2
Andrew Oglevie 4 2 0 2
Scott Wilson 4 0 2 2

 

Goaltending leaders

Player GP W L OTL GAA SV%
1. Andrew Hammond 3 3 0 0 1.60 .941
2. Jonas Johansson 1 0 1 0 3.05 .900

 

Player profile: Jacob Bryson

Watch: Youtube Video

The rookie defenseman is the subject of this week's feature on Amerks.com:

Let's set the stage.

Morning skate has just ended, and the guys are hitting the showers, grabbing lunch and heading home before they make their trek back to The Blue Cross Arena for their first Friday night face-off of the year. It's opening night in the Flower City and the Rochester Americans are gearing up to take on the Syracuse Crunch for the first of 12 matchups between the North Division rivals during the 2019-20 season.

Some Amerks have done this a time or two, and for others, it's a completely new chapter being added to their story.

Being a rookie in the American Hockey League is no joke. A lot of 'rooks' in the AHL have a professional game or two under their belt in the ECHL, but for some, they're fresh out of college and being thrown into a game with much bigger and faster competitors. The expectations are at an all-time high and the stakes are greater than ever before in their hockey careers.

Sounds intimidating, right?

One may think that a rookie in the AHL would have pregame jitters before their first professional game, maybe a little anxiety and a ton of built-up excitement right before one of arguably the biggest moments in their life. For one rookie on the Amerks opening day roster, though, it was clearly different. Like a seasoned veteran, Jacob Bryson took the first game of the season in stride as if he had his professional debut 10 years prior.

Following morning skate back on Oct. 4, Bryson mentioned how his first professional game happening later that evening would be like any other in his career.

"It's definitely exciting, but you can't let the emotions get the best of you, and in my opinion, it's just another game."

Spoken like a true professional.

Read the full story here.

 

News and notes

  • The Amerks concluded their first three-in-three weekend of the season in dramatic fashion as they erased a two-goal third-period deficit Sunday afternoon and completed the come-from-behind victory with a 3-2 shootout win over the Hartford Wolf Pack at the XL Center.
  • Rochester has now won three straight games in Hartford, including two comeback victories dating back to last season.

 

  • HOCKtoberfest is Friday:

Tweet from @AmerksHockey: Come *slide* on down for HOCKtoberfest this Friday, 10/18! 🍻🎟's: https://t.co/r9IJOkuOtO pic.twitter.com/Bx0rg5eWnN

  • In his first three appearances as an Amerk, netminder Andrew Hammond shows a perfect 3-0-0 record to go along with a 1.60 goals-against average and a .941 save percentage. 
  • His three wins are tied for most in the league while his save percentage and goals-against average rank seventh and ninth, respectively, among his fellow goaltenders who have played in more than two games this season. 
  • Hammond, who stopped all three shooters he faced in the shootout on Sunday, also begins the week third in minutes (187) and fifth in the AHL with 80 saves.

Tweet from @AmerksHockey: 🎟��� Ticket Tuesday 🎟���Enter for a chance at (2) two Lower Level Tickets and a @NewEraCap for HOCKtoberfest this Friday! Enter ������ https://t.co/iZxgTaEAxC pic.twitter.com/DAYRofGl3y

  • On Monday, Rochester Americans General Manager Randy Sexton announced today that the team has recalled goaltender Michael Houser from the Cincinnati Cyclones (ECHL).
  • Houser, 26, earns his first recall to Rochester after opening the 2019-20 campaign with a 36-save effort for the Cyclones this past Saturday while also earning the win. Houser shows an 112-52-13 record and nine shutouts in 185 career ECHL games between the Fort Wayne Komets, Cincinnati Cyclones and Manchester Monarchs. 
  • Additionally, he boasts a 32-26-4 record in 73 AHL contests between the Tucson Roadrunners, Cleveland Monsters, Ontario Reign and San Antonio Rampage.

Tweet from @AmerksHockey: Last chance to VOTE in the first round for who our bobblehead will be this year, don't miss out!Bobblehead Giveaway ������ March 20th!������VOTE: https://t.co/bAB4iBniXO pic.twitter.com/qLjc6HsiUY

 

Denis Hamel to be inducted into AHL Hall of Fame

Denis Hamel was one of the American Hockey League's most dangerous goal scorers over his 12 years on the circuit.

A native of Lachute, Quebec, Hamel broke into the pro ranks with the Rochester Americans in 1998 and helped the club reach back-to-back Calder Cup Finals, leading the team with 34 goals during the 1999-2000 season while also making the first of his three AHL All-Star Classic appearances.

Hamel also played 130 games with the Buffalo Sabres before signing with Ottawa in 2003, and his three years spent with the Binghamton Senators included a 91-point campaign in 2005-06 in which he also captured the Willie Marshall Award for leading the league with 56 goals.

Read more here.


Game recaps

Oct. 11: Amerks 2 - Springfield 1

Watch: Youtube Video

On the heels of a dominating third-period performance where the Rochester Americans (2-0-0-0) outshot the Springfield Thunderbirds (1-2-0-0) 18-5, the Amerks opened the first game of their three-in-three weekend with a 2-1 victory Friday night at the MassMutual Center.

Amerks forward Kevin Porter scored his first goal of the season midway through the second period while Andrew Oglevie tallied his second in as many games, which served as the game-winning goal, helping Rochester to its second straight win of the young campaign. Goaltender Andrew Hammond stopped 20 of 21 shots he faced to improve to 2-0-0.

 

Oct. 12: Amerks 2 - Providence 3

Watch: Youtube Video

A late goal by the Providence Bruins (3-0-0-0) in the final minute of regulation ultimately proved to be the difference as the Rochester Americans (2-1-0-0) came up short in suffering their first loss of the 2019-20 season Saturday at the Dunkin' Donuts Center.

Amerks forward Jean-Sebastien Dea scored his first goal of the season and as an Amerk while C.J. Smith also tallied his first of the campaign. Goaltender Jonas Johansson stopped 27 of 30 shots in his season debut but was dealt the loss.

 

Oct. 13: Amerks 3 - Hartford 2 (SO)

Watch: Youtube Video

By scoring twice in the final period of regulation, the Rochester Americans (3-1-0-0) closed out their three-in-three weekend with an incredible come-from-behind shootout victory over the Hartford Wolf Pack (3-0-0-1) Sunday afternoon at the XL Center.

Tage Thompson picked up his second multi-point effort of the season with two assists to lead Rochester to its first shootout win of the campaign. 

Remi Elie also turned in a two-point (1+1) performance, igniting the comeback early in the third period while also setting up Zach Redmond's game-tying goal with 13 seconds remaining. 

Goaltender Andrew Hammond improved to 3-0-0 on the year while making 33 saves and stopping all three Hartford skaters in the skills competition.

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