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With hat trick last weekend, Olofsson takes over Amerks scoring lead

Sabres.com's weekly Amerks Update

by Rochester Americans @AmerksHockey / Amerks.com

The Amerks come into the week sitting atop the AHL's North Division standings with a two-point lead on the Syracuse Crunch and five ahead of both the Toronto Marlies and Utica Comets, all of whom joined Rochester in the postseason this past spring. 

The Crunch, however, have two games in hand of the Amerks while Rochester has games in hand of both Toronto and Utica. The Amerks have collected 17 out of a possible 22 points in their last 11 games, which included a season-long 10-game point streak, and have 25 points in their last 18 games dating back to a 4-0 shutout win in Cleveland on Dec. 26. 

Among all AHL teams, only the Charlotte Checkers (32) have more wins than the Amerks (29), who are third overall in the Eastern Conference with a .656 points percentage coming into the week.

 

Statistical leaders

Player GP G A PTS
1. Victor Olofsson 45 19 24 43
C.J. Smith (recalled by Buffalo) 41 18 23 41
3. Zach Redmond 41 19 20 39
4. Danny O'Regan 48 17 16 33
5. Wayne Simpson 47 15 14 29

 

Goaltending leaders

Player GP W L OTL GAA SV%
Scott Wedgewood 28 17 7 2 2.79 .909
Adam Wilcox 19 8 6 3 2.89 .896

 

News and notes

  • On the strength of his second four-point effort of the season on Friday highlighted by his first career hat trick, Victor Olofsson leads the club with 43 points (19+24) in 45 games this season and is one of just two Rochester skaters to surpass the 40-point mark. 

Tweet from @AmerksHockey: #GOALofsson 😎 pic.twitter.com/fD0VgoAB9M

  • A year after pacing the SHL with 27 goals, Olofsson has been averaging nearly a point-per-game, leading the team with 24 assists while sharing the team-lead in goals (19). 
  • Olofsson, who earned CCM/AHL Player of the Month honors for October, is also tied for second in the AHL in game-winning goals (6) and 14th in power-play assists (13) while ranking 15th among the league's top point-getters. He hasn't gone more than three straight games without a point all season. 

Tweet from @AmerksHockey: Thanks to our friends at @HolyChildhood for playing Ball Hockey with us last week! pic.twitter.com/HBOVbHqYm4

  • At 14-5-3-1 (32 points), Rochester has the third-best road record in the AHL and have the third-most regulation wins away from home with 14. 
  • The Amerks remain the only AHL team this season with only five regulation losses on the road having collected at least one point in 18 of their 23 contests away from The Blue Cross Arena. 
  • Coming into this week, the Amerks have won eight of their last 12 road contests dating back to their 4-3 win at Syracuse on Dec. 8 while also outscoring the opposition 41-32 over that span.

Tweet from @AmerksHockey: Renew or purchase 2019-20 Season Tickets to be entered into weekly giveaways! Friday, we will be giving away our 2018-19 Military Jersey! Info: https://t.co/pHNngasmAW pic.twitter.com/BHK7bZS5Rh

 

Coming up

The Amerks begin a busy week with four games over the next six days on Tuesday when they visit the Cleveland Monsters at Quicken Loans Arena. More importantly, Tuesday's matchup will be the second of 11 straight Divisional games for the Amerks, who will face Syracuse on back-to-back nights as part of a home-and-home series before hosting Binghamton on Sunday afternoon to close out their three-in-three weekend.

With a perfect 4-0-0-0 mark through the first four games of the eight-game season-series against the Cleveland Monsters this season, the Amerks show an impressive 24-5-2-3 record in their last 34 games against the Monsters since the start of the 2011-12 season. In the last five years, Rochester also holds a 10-1-1-0 record.

The games will be carried live on The Sports Leader AM 950/95.7 FM ESPN Rochester as well as AHLTV.

 

Game recaps

Feb. 6: Crunch 2 - Amerks 1 (SO) 

Watch: Youtube Video

Despite the Rochester Americans scoring the first goal of Wednesday night's contest and extending their point streak to tie a season-long nine straight games, the Syracuse Crunch (28-13-2-1) stole the extra point as they came back for a 2-1 shootout win at The Blue Cross Arena.

Forward Taylor Leier tallied his second goal with the Amerks and 12th overall of the season in the defeat while goaltender Scott Wedgewood (16-7-2), who missed the last four games due to injury, stopped 31 of 32 but was handed the shootout loss. Over his last 12 games, Wedgewood shows a record of 8-3-1 going back to the game after Christmas.


Feb. 8: Thunderbirds 1 - Amerks 7 

Watch: Youtube Video

Led by Victor Olofsson's four-point night (3+1), which featured his first-career professional hat-trick, the Rochester Americans cruised to a 7-1 rout over the Springfield Thunderbirds (21-19-6-4) to close out their brief two-game homestand Friday at The Blue Cross Arena.

On the strength of his second four-point night of the season, Olofsson took over the team lead in scoring as he has 42 points (18+24) in his first 44 games, which includes 18 points (8+10) in his last 16 contests. 

Forward Rasmus Asplund recorded his second-career three-point (1+2) outing of the slate while Danny O'Regan and Matt Tennyson both chipped in with a pair of assists. Wayne Simpson, Scott Wilson and Tyler Randell all lit the lamp for the Amerks, who claimed five of the last six meetings with the Thunderbirds.

Goaltender Scott Wedgewood, who came within five minutes of earning his fourth shutout of the season, stopped 19 of the 20 shots he faced to improve to 17-7-2 on the season. His 17 wins are a new personal-high and rank sixth-most in the AHL. Over his last 13 games, Wedgewood shows a record of 9-3-1 going back to the game after Christmas.


Feb. 9: Amerks 2 - Comets 5

Watch: Youtube Video

After jumping out to a two-goal lead, the Rochester Americans saw the Utica Comets (26-19-3-2) respond with five straight unanswered goals, including three in a span of 58 seconds, to hand the Amerks a 5-2 loss and end Rochester's season-long 10-game point streak Saturday night at the Adirondack Bank Center.

For the second straight night, forward Victor Olofsson found the scoresheet as he booked his 19th goal of the season, tying him with Zach Redmond for the most among all Amerks skaters, while Wayne Simpson notched his 15th marker of the campaign. Simpson is one goal shy of tying his career-best of 16 and one point away from reaching the 30-point plateau for the fourth straight season. 

Goaltender Adam Wilcox made 30 saves but was dealt the loss in the crease. 

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