AEROS WEEKLY REPORT
Coming Attractions – Two home games this week!
WED, vs. CHI, 7:05 p.m.Notables – Thirteen of Houston’s 26 goals have been scored by rookies. Aeros LW Benoit Pouliot (five) and RW Danny Irmen (four) rank first and tied for second, respectively, among AHL rookies in goals. Houston scored just four power play goals in its first eight games, but erupted for three Saturday against a Peoria team that entered the game with the top penalty killing unit in the league. The Aeros have followed a six or more game winless slide up with three straight wins just four other times in franchise history - December 5-17, 2003 (six straight wins); December 21, 2002-January 3, 2003 (seven-game winning streak and 11-0-2 unbeaten streak); January 26-February 1, 2000; and January 5-17, 1996. Saturday, Peoria’s Dave Baseggio became the first ever former Aero to coach against the Aeros as a head coach. Houston is 7-1-0-0 all-time at home versus Peoria, counting both the regular and post-seasons, outscoring the Rivermen 38-16. Four of the seven wins have come by four or more goals, including Saturday’s 7-1 rout.
Happy Hour, presented by The Maple Leaf Pub
Get a center ice ticket, $10 in Toyota Bucks, free parking and a Maple Leaf Pub drink coupon, all for just $32! Package also available in lower end zone ($23). Click here to order. Username is Happy, password is Aeros. Packages can also be ordered by calling 713.974.PUCK.
The Aeros meet perhaps their fiercest rival, the Chicago Wolves, for the first of eight games this season. Houston went 5-3-0-0 against last season against Chicago, which missed the playoffs. After losing the first Toyota Center meeting 5-1, Houston earned three straight one-goal home wins in the series. The Wolves are 1-1-1-0 in their last three games and 5-3-1-0 overall for 11 points, good enough for a tie for third in the West Division. Long-time Aeros nemesis Darren Haydar, a catalyst in Milwaukee’s playoff sweep of Houston last spring, leads the entire AHL with 16 points (8-8=16). The Wolves also feature former Aeros Kyle Wanvig and Cory Larose. Wanvig, a member of Houston’s Calder Cup championship team in 2003, hasn’t faced the Aeros as an opponent in his career.
FRI, vs. TOR, 7:35 p.m.
Happy Feet Movie/Military Night
The first 3,000 fans will receive a Happy Feet Movie poster and activity book. It’s also Military Night. Click here for details on how to sponsor tickets to bring military members and their families to the game.
The Toronto Marlies and former Aeros All-Star Erik Westrum make their only trip to Houston this season. Toronto is 4-5-1-0, in third place in the North Division, but is 3-5-1-0 in its last nine after opening the season with a 6-0 rout of Syracuse. Westrum, meanwhile, has posted 13 points (5-8=13) to rank tied for seventh in the AHL. The Aeros and Marlies split two games last season, each winning 4-2 on home ice.
SAT, at HAM, 6 p.m.
The Aeros hop on an early flight to Hamilton, where they take on the Bulldogs to finish off the season series. Houston defeated Hamilton 2-1 last Friday. Hamilton is the site of perhaps the Aeros’ finest hour – a Game 7 win in the 2003 Calder Cup Finals, but the Bulldogs dealt Houston a 7-1 loss at Copps Coliseum in their only return trip, last season.
All Aeros games are broadcast live on KNTH 1070-AM and through Aeros.com. For $6, you can also watch the game live via B2 Networks. Visit Aeros.com 10 minutes prior to gametime to order.
Player of the Week G Josh Harding
Aeros G Josh Harding
10/27 vs. HAM 2-1 W, 20-21
10/28 vs. PEO 7-1 W, 27-28
Totals - 2gp, 2-0-0, 1.00 gaa, .959 pct.
Harding earned a pair of wins last week, allowing just one goal in each...Harding ranks first in the AHL in games played (nine), minutes (524), shots faced (255) and saves (233), while ranking tied for 17th in gaa (2.52) and 17th in save pct (.914)...Harding’s nine consecutive games played are the longest streak for an Aeros goalie since Mike Smith’s franchise record of 19, set from November 26, 2004, to January 25, 2005.
The ECHL’s Texas Wildcatters won both their games last week, including a 6-4 victory over Pensacola in their home opener, to improve to 3-1-0-0, tied for second in the South Division…Texas went 10 for a whopping 43 on the power play in the two wins…F Marco Rosa (3-5=8) and D Jean-Francois David (1-7=8), both of whom attended camp with the Aeros, are tied for the team’s scoring lead…D Paul Albers (2-2=4) and D Mike Madill (0-4=4), both Minnesota Wild contracts, have four points apiece…F Riley Emmerson has 15 PIM’s in two games…F Mark Rooneem is plus-one in four games…G Miroslav Kopriva made his season debut Saturday, allowing four goals on 30 shots and picking up the victory.
The CHL’s Austin Ice Bats are 1-2-1 and in third place in the Southeast Division. RW Michael Tucciarone, who attended the Aeros’ training camp last month, has two points (1-1=2).
Sponsorship packets for the 12th Annual Houston Aeros Golf Classic are now available. The tournament, benefiting Houston Aeros Charities and Elves & More, is set for Tuesday, Nov. 28 at Wildcat Golf Club at 12000 Almeda. Space is going quickly, so call 713.974.PUCK today!
Aeros split two games
HOU 2, HAM 1; HOU 7, PEO 1
Friday: Rookies Benoit Pouliot and Ryan Hamilton scored a goal apiece and Josh Harding made 20 saves, as the Houston Aeros defeated the Hamilton Bulldogs, 2-1, at Toyota Center.
Saturday: Matt Foy scored two of Houston’s three power play goals and added two assists, and Danny Irmen added two goals, as the Houston Aeros routed the Peoria Rivermen 7-1 on Breast Cancer Awareness Night at Toyota Center. Curtis Murphy (goal) and Josh Harding (27 saves) used their pink-taped sticks to their full advantage, and defensemen Clayton Stoner and Ryan Stokes also scored for Houston (3-5-0-1), which has won three straight. The Aeros entered the game last in the AHL on the power play, against a Peoria penalty-kill unit ranked last in the league.
Aeros’ Practice schedule:
Monday – 10-11:30 a.m., Sugar Land
Tuesday – 10-11:30 a.m., Sugar Land
Wednesday – 10-10:45 a.m., pre-game skate; vs. CHI, 7:05 p.m.
Thursday – TBA, Sugar Land
Friday – 10-10:45 a.m., pre-game skate; vs. TOR, 7:35 p.m.
Saturday – at HAM, 6 p.m.
Sunday – Travel Day
Aeros non game-day practices are at Sugar Land Ice & Sports Center, the Official Training Facility of the Houston Aeros.