GAME NOTES: 1/6 vs. Wheeling
Game 33 (Home Game 16)
Vs. Wheeling Nailers (17-14-3-0, 37 pts)
Saturday, January 6, 2018 - 7:35pm ET
U.S. Bank Arena - Cincinnati, OH
Overview: The Cyclones return to the friendly confines of U.S. Bank Arena on Saturday night to take on the Wheeling Nailers, for their annual Throwback Night and Teddy Bear Toss. Cincinnati is coming off a 3-0 shutout win over the Toledo Walleye on Friday night, and have now won four of their last five games and eight of the last 10.
Last Night Recap: The Cincinnati Cyclones (20-11-1-0) shutout the Toledo Walleye, 3-0, on Friday night. Forwards Shawn O’Donnell, Justin Vaive, and Winston Day Chief scored the goals for Cincinnati, while goaltender Jason Kasdorf earned his first clean sheet of the season, stopping all 29 shots he faced. Each team recorded 29 shots on goal in this one, while the Cyclones were a perfect 3-for-3 on the penalty kill.
Sunday Evening Recap: The Cincinnati Cyclones (19-11-1-0) closed out 2017 with a 2-1 win over the Brampton Beast. Forwards Justin Danforth and Brandon McNally tallied the goals for Cincinnati. The Cyclones outshot the Beast, 28-24, with goaltender Jason Kasdorf stood stopping 23 of the 24 shots he faced in the win.
Last Saturday Recap: The Cincinnati Cyclones (18-11-1-0) fell to the Indy Fuel, 2-1, on Saturday night. Forward Winston Day Chief netted the lone goal for Cincinnati. The Cyclones outshot the Fuel, 35-20 on the night, with goaltender Jonas Johansson turning aside 18 in a losing effort.
Previewing Wheeling: The Nailers snapped their four-game skid with a 7-4 win over the Manchester Monarchs on Friday night, and are currently in fourth place in a crowded ECHL North Division, just one point back of third and two points back of second. The Nailers enter Saturday with the League’s top power play unit, converting on 21.7% of their chances (31/143). Additionally, they have one of the top offenses as well, averaging 3.56 goals per game, which is good for fifth in the ECHL. Rookie forward Cam Brown leads all active skaters with 31 points (6g, 25a) through 34 games played this season. He is followed by forwards Garrett Meurs (13g, 15a) and Nick Sorkin (4g, 21a) who round out the top three. In goal, Adam Morrison has appeared in 10 games, posting a 3-7-0-0 record along with a 3.14 goals-against average and a .899 save percentage.
Inside the Series: Cincinnati and Wheeling have met three times already this season, with the ‘Clones taking two of the three. They are slated to meet twice more, with both contests coming in Wheeling.
Next Game Preview: The Cyclones welcome in the Kansas City Mavericks next Friday night, in the first of four meetings this season. Cincinnati and Kansas City met four times last season, with the Mavericks posing a 3-0-0-1 record in those contests.
Shutting the Door: Cyclones goaltender Jason Kasdorf stopped all 29 shots he faced in Friday night’s 3-0 win over the Toledo Walleye for his first shutout as a Cyclone and second of his career. Kasdorf has won three starts in a row, having allowed just two goals in that time.
Another Day, Another Goal: Forward Winston Day Chief continued his penchant for scoring goals with a tally in Friday’s 3-0 win over the Toledo Walleye. He also scored the lone goal in last Saturday’s 2-1 loss to the Indy Fuel, and lit the lamp twice in last Friday’s 5-4 shootout win over the Quad City Mallards. He now has nine goals in his last 10 games, including his first ECHL hat trick in a 6-1 win over the Mallards on December 15th. He currently is tied for second on the Cyclones with 13 goals.
Hey Now, You’re an All-Star!: The Cincinnati Cyclones, proud ECHL affiliate of the National Hockey League’s (NHL) Buffalo Sabres and American Hockey League’s (AHL) Rochester Americans, and in conjunction with the ECHL, have announced that rookie forward Justin Danforth will be the Cyclones representative at the upcoming 2018 CCM/ECHL All-Star Classic, competing for Team Central. The game is scheduled to take place on Monday, January 15, at the Indiana Farmers Coliseum in Indianapolis, IN; home of the ECHL’s Indy Fuel. A native of Oshawa, ON, Danforth currently leads all rookies and is tied for second in overall ECHL scoring with 38 points (18g, 20a) along with a plus-20 on-ice rating in 32 games played. He enjoyed an 11-game point streak from November 18-December 13, accounting for seven goals and 10 assists in that span, including five multi-point outings.
First for the Kid: Cyclones defenseman Anthony Florentino netted his first pro goal in last Friday’s 5-4 shootout win over the Quad City Mallards. Florentino has three points in 12 games during his first season as a pro.
Piling up the Points: Forward Jesse Schultz saw his 13-game point streak come to an end in last Friday’s 5-4 shootout win over the Mallards, however he is still tied for fourth in ECHL scoring with 36 points (13g, 23a). He has points in all but seven games played this season, including six multi-point outings.
Early and Often: The Cyclones are outscoring the opposition 34-22 in the first period this season, and are 12-5-0-0 when leading after 20 minutes. Additionally, Cincinnati is 15-4-0-0 when scoring first, and 11-1-0-0 when scoring the first two goals of the game.
Lending a Helping Hand: Forward Shawn O’Donnell dished out a season-high four assists in last Wednesday’s 5-3 win over the Ft. Wayne Komets. Despite seeing his 11-game point streak come to an end in Saturday’s 2-1 loss to the Indy Fuel, his 32 points (10g, 22) have him tied for eighth in ECHL scoring.
Second Line Prowess: The line of Brandon McNally, Daniel Muzito-Bagenda, and Winston Day Chief have led the Cyclones offensively over the last 11 games, totaling 12 goals and 20 assists in that span.
Secondary Scoring: Cincinnati’s second and third lines, along with the defensive corps, have made major contributions offensively in recent games, accounting for 31 goals and 47 assists over the last 18 outings.
Limited Opportunity: Cincinnati is now third in the ECHL, averaging 2.72 goals against per game, and have allowed three or fewer goals in 14 of their last 18 games. Additionally, they have given up more than four goals on just six occasions.
Finishing What They Started: The Cyclones have a 14-1-0-0 record when leading through two periods this season. This is a continuing trend from last season, when the Cyclones were 23-1-3-1 when leading after one, and 26-1-2-0 when leading after 40 minutes.
New Affiliation: This offseason, the Cyclones, in conjunction with the National Hockey League’s (NHL) Buffalo Sabres, announced a new affiliation agreement. For Cincinnati, the move comes following a 10-year partnership with the Nashville Predators, while the Sabres recently concluded a two-year relationship with the now-defunct Elmira Jackals. This affiliation will be a reunion of sorts for the cities of Cincinnati and Buffalo, as the Sabres’ American Hockey League (AHL) Affiliate from 1971-1974 was the Cincinnati Swords. The Rochester Americans will serve as Cincinnati’s new AHL affiliate, and have been the AHL affiliate of the Sabres since 2011. This is not the first time Cincinnati and Rochester have been affiliated, as the two clubs teamed up in 2010-11 when the Americans were affiliated with the Florida Panthers.
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