GAME PREVIEW: Jackals Open Second Half Against Monarchs
Game 37: Elmira Jackals (9-22-5-0) vs. Manchester Monarchs (24-10-2-2)
6:00 p.m., SNHU Arena, Manchester, New Hampshire
The Jackals open up the second half of the 2016-17 season with the second of three straight games in Manchester against the Monarchs at SNHU Arena. It's the seventh of 14 head-to-head matches and the fourth game played in Manchester.
Manchester had its three-game winning streak snapped last night by the Jackals, but they are still 6-2-1-1 in their last 10 games. Because of that, the Monarchs now have 52 points and a 24-10-2-2 record, putting them six points ahead of Reading for first in the North Division.
The Jackals knocked off the Monarchs last night to give them a 2-2-0-0 record over their last four games, improving to 9-22-5-0. The result ended an eight-game road losing streak for Elmira. With 23 points, the Jackals are in sixth place in the North Division and 13th place in the Eastern Conference.
Jackals Pregame at 5:45 p.m. Radio: 1410 WELM | TV: WETM-2
Last time out
The Jackals squandered a 3-0 lead, but rallied late and then beat the Manchester Monarchs, 5-4, in overtime last night at SNHU Arena.
Elmira opened a 2-0 lead in the first period on the road. Sam Pvorozniouk opened the scoring at 11:30 of the first with a power-play goal from the bottom of the left circle for a 1-0 lead. Ian Young scored his first of the season at 15:10 for a 2-0 lead. In the second, Greg Amlong put the Jackals up 3-0 with a power-play goal from the top of the right circle at 19:37.
The Monarchs scored four-straight goals in the third period to turn a 3-0 Jackals lead into a 4-3 Manchester lead. Matt Leitner got it started with a natural hat trick, scoring goals at 4:07, 6:06 and 12:57 to even the score at three. Quentin Shore hammered a one-timer from the left circle at 14:34 to give the Monarchs their first lead. Forced to rally, the Jackals tied the game at 18:42 on a deflected by Kenton Miller. Then, tied at four in overtime, Matt Lane batted in a puck out of mid air on a rebound following a Sam Povorozniouk right circle shot.
See ya, streaks
Last night's result between the Jackals and Monarchs saw two lengthy streaks come to an end. The win ended the Jackals' eight-game road losing streak, which matched their worst road stretch of the season. It was Elmira's first win away from First Arena since Dec. 10 at Florida.
For Manchester, the loss snapped a season-high eight-game home winning streak, which fell one win short of matching Tulsa for the longest home winning streak of the season. The Monarchs hadn't lost at SNHU Arena since Nov. 25 vs. the Everblades.
Last night was the 100th career ECHL appearance for Andy Iles over the course of his three-year pro career.
With the win, Iles pushed his career record to 44-38-9 with a 3.08 goals-against average and an .896 save percentage. The Cornell University product, who went 58-42-17 in 118 games for the Big Red, is in his first season with the Jackals after seeing time with three ECHL clubs in 2015-16.
Tonight marks the seventh of 14 head-to-head matches this season between the Jackals and Monarchs, with both teams winning three times. Two of the Jackals wins, including last night's, have come in overtime. The Jackals visit Manchester four more times, including tonight and the Monarchs come to First Arena four more times this season.
After his hat trick last night, Matt Leitner leads the season series with nine points (4g, 5a) in just four games. Alexx Privitera is second with seven points (1g, 6a). The Jackals are led by Kenton Miller's six points (5g, 1a), followed by four players at four points.
In goal, Andy Iles is 2-2-0-0 with a 3.74 goals-against average and an .885 save percentage against Manchester. Sam Brittain is 2-0-1-0 against the Jackals with a 2.30 goals-against average and a .903 save percentage, but he is on recall in the AHL. Jonah Imoo is 1-1-1-0 with a 3.65 goals-against average and .866 save percentage.
Scouting the Monarchs
The Monarchs enter tonight with a 24-10-2-2 record, giving them 52 points and a six point cushion for first place in the North Division. They are 14-5-1-1 in 21 home games, including two wins in two tries against the Jackals.
The Monarchs offense is second in the league at 3.92 goals per game, although their run of scoring at least five goals in a game was snapped last night. They are led by Quentin Shore (15g, 17a) and Matt Leitner (9g, 23a). Leitner has been the hottest player for Manchester, posting 10 points (5g, 5a) in the last four games.
Sam Brittain is Manchester's number one goalie, appearing in 24 of the team's 37 games. He boasts a 17-5-1-0 record with a 2.77 goals-against average and a .907 save percentage, but he is currently on recall in the AHL. Jonah Imoo takes over the number one spot with Brittain in the AHL. Imoo is 4-2-1-1 with a 3.22 goals-against average and a .895 save percentage in eight games.
The Monarchs power play ranks fourth in the ECHL at 21.8% (29-for-133) this season. They are even better at SNHU Arena, going 18-for-71 (25.4%), which ranks second in the ECHL on home ice. Against Elmira, the Monarchs power play is 4-for-18 (22.2%). Overall, the Monarchs have scored a power-play goal in four straight games and seven of the last nine games.
The Jackals power play was 2-for-3 last night, snapping a 1-for-19 streak over the previous five games. Now the Jackals are 17th in the ECHL at 15.7% (19-for-121) on the season. They're just 9-for-78 (11.5%) away from First Arena this season. Last night was just the third time all season, and second on the road, that the Jackals scored more than one power-play goal in a game.
Despite being ranked first in the ECHL, Manchester's penalty kill has allowed multiple power-play goals in the last four games, a stretch in which they're 10-for-19 ( 52.6) on the kill. Overall, their top-ranked unit is successfully killing 87.3% of opposition power plays, allowing just 19 power-play goals in 150 chances.
The Jackals penalty kill gave up a goal on the only power play they faced last night. That has dropped them to 19th in the ECHL at 82.0%, but their struggles are emphasized on the road, where they sit at 78.8%.
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