UHL Western Conference on a Roll
UHL Western Conference on a Roll
Tuesday, Feb. 13th, 2007
LAKE ST. LOUIS, MO - The five teams in the United Hockey League’s (UHL) Western Conference all won at least two games this past week and posted a 12-4-2 combined record. Leading the way were the undefeated Rockford IceHogs with a 3-0-0 record. The Fort Wayne Komets also won three contests going 3-1-0 on the week. Picking up five points were the Quad City Mallards (2-0-1) and the Chicago Hounds (2-1-1), while the Bloomington PrairieThunder tallied four points with a 2-2-0 record.
On a season-high five game-winning streak, the IceHogs opened the week with a 6-1 win over Bloomington on Wednesday, took a 2-1 shootout win over the Flint Generals on Friday and completed the perfect week with a 5-1 victory over the Muskegon Fury on Saturday. Goaltender Frederic Cloutier recorded all three victories in net, for a 1.00 goals against average (GAA) and 0.954 save percentage (SPCT). Center Preston Mizzi paced the offense with three goals and three assists on the week.
The Komets won 3-of-4 games, improved to 33-14-2 for 68 points and continue to lead the Western Conference after 49 games. Fort Wayne extended its winning streak to nine games with a 4-2 win over the Port Huron Flags on Wednesday and a 5-4 shootout victory over the Kalamazoo Wings on Friday. However, the streak was snapped on Saturday when the PrairieThunder downed the Komets 4-2. Fort Wayne beat Kalamazoo for the second time in three days, 3-2, on Sunday. Left winger Daniel Goneau helped lead the offense with five points (4g, 1a), and both Kevin St. Pierre (2-1-0) and Dan McWhinney (1-0-0) picked up victories in goal.
Playing three games in three days, the Mallards went 2-0-1. Winning back-to-back games, they were victorious at Bloomington, 7-3, on Friday, and Quad City returned home to beat Flint 6-4 on Saturday. Forward Brett Pilkington recorded his first career hat trick against the Generals. On Sunday, the PrairieThunder took a 3-2 shootout win over the Mallards. Goaltender Jason Tapp recorded all three decisions in goal for Quad City, making 101 saves on the week. Pilkington ended with five goals and a plus-5 rating in the three games.
The Hounds started with a 4-2 victory over Kalamazoo on Wednesday in its only home match of the week. Chicago then traveled to visit the Elmira Jackals, playing back-to-back games on Friday and Saturday. The Hounds fell 3-2 on Friday, but rebounded to win a 3-2 game on the following night. The Hounds traveled to Port Huron on Sunday and lost 5-4 in a shootout. Forward Drew Otten led the offense with three goals and three assists. He scored the game-winner in both Chicago victories.
After dropping a pair of games to open the week, Bloomington won games on back-to-back dates for the first time in franchise history. The PrairieThunder picked up a 4-2 victory over Fort Wayne on Saturday and a 3-2 shootout win at Quad City on Sunday. Forward Jon Booras’ tally in the shootout proved to be the winner. Center Tyler Rennette tallied five points on the week (1g, 4a) to help lead the offense. Defenseman Ryan Gillis scored twice in the win against Fort Wayne.
NEW MAN IN CHARGE – On Thursday, the Elmira Jackals named Paul Gillis their new head coach, an eight-year veteran of the UHL. During his previous UHL tenure, Gillis has been behind the bench for the Quad City Mallards, the New Haven Knights and the Danbury Trashers. The Toronto, Ontario native has a career UHL coaching record of 358-184-62 in 604 games, a career 64.4% winning percentage, which ranks 2nd All-Time in the UHL in wins and games coached. Perhaps even more impressive than his vast number of wins is the fact that Gillis has led each and every UHL team into the playoffs. In his first two games behind the bench of the Jackals, Elmira split a pair of games against the Chicago Hounds.
MILESTONES – Kalamazoo forward Kory Karlander reached his 500th career point on Saturday against the Port Huron Flags. He assisted a power-play goal by Joe Markusen with 39 seconds remaining in the game to record his 500th career point.
Elmira defenseman Scott Drevitch is one game away from reaching the 1,200 games mark for his professional career. He is expected to reach the milestone on Wednesday at Kalamazoo.
Muskegon left wing Mike Watt is one point away from having 300 in his pro career.
AROUND THE LEAGUE
Bloomington PrairieThunder - (2-2-0) – The PrairieThunder is on a two-game winning streak which ties a franchise record…Bloomington is 4-2 in shootouts this season and has made 10-of-29 shots (.344)…Center Tyler Rennette has scored eight points in his last six games (3g, 5a)…Rennette is tied with forward Mike Zbriger for the team lead with 34 points…Zbriger snapped a six-game scoreless streak against Rockford on Wednesday…The PrairieThunder will play three road games this week. Bloomington is 6-17-2 on the road this season.
Chicago Hounds - (2-1-1) – Left wing Steve Cygan has become Chicago’s scoring leader with 28 points (12g, 16a) in 44 games played…Chicago has only been involved in two shootouts this season, and they have lost both of them…Forward Drew Otten is over a point per game pace so far in February with seven points in six games…Chicago is 17-1-0 when leading after two periods…The Hounds have a 3-4-0 record against Fort Wayne this season. They will face the Komets twice this week…Goaltender Mary Magers leads the UHL in saves (1,230).
Elmira Jackals - (1-1-0) – After splitting a two-game series with Chicago, Elmira is now 4-3-0 against the Hounds this season…This weekend defenseman Dale Lupul became the fourth Jackal to record over 100 penalty minutes…Forward Noah Katz scored a goal in his first game with Elmira on Friday. Goaltender Dave Lemanowicz earned the first assist of his career on the Katz score…Lemanowicz stopped 34-of-36 shots in a 3-2 win on Friday…The Jackals embark on a four-game road trip this week, and they have a 10-13-0 road record this season.
Flint Generals - (0-1-1) – The Generals are 10-4-2 in 2007…Center Terry Marchant is on a five-game points streak (4g, 5a)…Left wing Jeff Zehr leads Flint with 19 goals and 11 power play goals…The Generals are second in the league on the power play (.203) and lead the UHL with 78 power play goals…Gerard Miller is fourth among defenseman in scoring with 37 points…After losing to Rockford in a shootout on Friday, Flint is 1-4 in shootouts this season…The Generals hold a 12-6-0 record against this week’s opponents, Port Huron, Bloomington and the K-Wings.
Fort Wayne Komets - (3-1-0) – The Komets are 10-1-0 in their last 11 games…On Saturday, the team’s nine-game winning streak and defenseman Guy Dupuis’ and center J.C. Ruid’s nine-game point streaks were snapped against Bloomington…Goaltender Dan McWhinney registered his third-straight road win with a 3-2 victory over Kalamazoo on Sunday…Right wing David Hukalo recorded his 100th career point on Wednesday against Port Huron…The Komets play four games this week (two home, two away), all against Western Conference opponents.
Kalamazoo Wings – (1-2-1) – The K-Wings snapped a season high five-game winless streak on Saturday with a 3-0 win over Port Huron. The shutout was the second of goaltender Ryan Nie’s pro career…Nie played in all four games this past week, going 1-1-1…Forward Kory Karlander is on a four-game point streak…Kalamazoo is 19-0-0 when leading after two periods of play…Left wing Nick Bootland ranks second in the UHL with 243 shots…The K-Wings will play Port Huron again on Friday. Right wing Tyler Willis has eight points (3g, 5a) in his last three games against the Flags.
Muskegon Fury - (1-1-0) – Despite having a 4-5-0 record after the All-Star break, the Fury remain the league’s best team with 79 points and a 39-11-1 record…Goaltender Clayton Pool sustained only his second road loss of the season on Saturday. He has the UHL’s best away record this season with a 17-2-0 mark…Left wing Mike Watt ranks third in the league in goals (30) and fourth in scoring with 59 points…Muskegon has the league’s best record when scoring the game’s first goal (27-3-0)…The Fury host Elmira for back-to-back games this weekend.
Port Huron Flags - (1-3-0) – With their second February victory on Sunday, the Flags doubled their win count from January (1-8-1)…Center Greg Bullock recorded his 40th point of the season on Wednesday. He currently leads the Flags with 41 points (13g, 28a)…Forward Kris Vernarsky scored his first goal as a Flag on Friday…Right wing Bobby Kukulka is one goal shy of his 20th season tally, which he has racked up in just two months with the team…Port Huron continues its four-game home stand this week by hosting Flint, Kalamazoo and Bloomington.
Quad City Mallards - (2-0-1) – The Mallards won four consecutive games before dropping a 3-2 shootout decision to Bloomington on Sunday. The four-game win streak was Quad City’s longest of the season…Forward Don Parsons scored his league leading 32nd goal on Sunday versus Bloomington. He leads the Mallards and ranks sixth in the UHL in points with 55…Forward Luke Stauffacher recorded goals in five consecutive games from Jan. 28-Feb 10…At 23-19-6, the Mallards have their best winning percentage of the year (.542).
Rockford IceHogs - (3-0-0) – The Hogs tied a club record on Saturday by winning their seventh straight game at home…Center Preston Mizzi is on a 12-game point streak (13g, 15a) and winger Bryce Cockburn is on a 10-game point streak (3g, 12a)…Defenseman Tim Wedderburn notched his first goal in over two years on Saturday…Winger Jason Ralph netted his 100th-career goal on Saturday. With Ralph in the lineup, the IceHogs are 12-0-1…Rockford tied a team record on Friday when they held the Flint Generals to just one shot on goal in the third period.
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