Game 38: Elmira Jackals (9-23-5-0) vs. Manchester Monarchs (25-10-2-2)
3:00 p.m., SNHU Arena, Manchester, New Hampshire
The Jackals wrap up a three-in-three weekend and play a rubber match with the Manchester Monarchs this afternoon at SNHU Arena. It's the eighth of 14 head-to-head matches and the fifth game played in Manchester.
Manchester had its three-game winning streak snapped Friday night by the Jackals, but responded with a 6-1 win last night to even the weekend series. They are still 6-2-1-1 in their last 10 games and lead the North Division with 54 points and a 25-10-2-2 record.
The Jackals have split the first two games in Manchester and are 2-3-0-0 in five games under interim Head Coach Mike Duco. Overall Elmira is 9-23-5-0, with 23 points, which places the Jackals in sixth place in the North Division and 13th place in the Eastern Conference.
Jackals Pregame at 2:45 p.m. Radio: 1410 WELM | TV: WETM-2
Last time out
The Manchester Monarchs scored four power-play goals and surged past the Jackals, 6-1, last night at SNHU Arena in Manchester.
The Monarchs grabbed a lead late in a tightly contested opening period, getting a power-play goal from Joey Diamond with 1:45 to play in the first period to make it 1-0. The Jackals pulled even in the second period on a goal from Guy Leboeuf from the right circle at 8:30. Manchester dominated the rest of the second period and the rest of the game to pull out the win. They got a power-play goal from Kevin Morris at 9:44 then two straight goals from Ashton Rome at 10:23 and 17:23 to turn a 1-1 game into a 4-1 Monarchs lead.
Diamond scored his second of the game late in the second to send the game into the third period with Manchester ahead 5-1. Tyler Parks took over in net for the Jackals in the third and allowed a goal to Zac Lynch at 4:05 to make it a 6-1 final.
Welcome to the league
Jackals rookie goalie Tyler Parks made his ECHL debut in the third period of last night's loss to the Monarchs. Parks turned aside 11 of 12 shots he faced in relief of starter Jason Kasdorf. He was signed by the Jackals earlier this weekend when Kasdorf was recalled by the Rochester Americans.
Kasdorf was reassigned to Elmira prior to last night's game so the Jackals will carry three goalies at least through the end of the weekend. Parks participated in training camp with the Jackals and he made 32 saves in a shutout in his only preseason start with the Jackals.
Tonight marks the eighth of 14 head-to-head matches this season between the Jackals and Monarchs, with Manchester leading four wins to three. Two of the Jackals wins, including Friday's, have come in overtime. The Jackals visit Manchester three more times, including tonight and the Monarchs come to First Arena four more times this season.
With six points over the first two games this weekend, Matt Leitner leads the season series with 12 points (4g, 8a) in just five games. Three active players are next in line with five points in the series. 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. Jason Kasdorf is 1-2-0-0 with a 4.08 goals-against average and an .887 save percentage. 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 2-1-1-0 with a 2.99 goals-against average and .897 save percentage.
Scouting the Monarchs
The Monarchs enter this afternoon with a 25-10-2-2 record, giving them 54 points and an eight point cushion for first place in the North Division. They are 15-5-1-1 in 22 home games, including three wins in four tries against the Jackals.
The Monarchs offense is second in the league at 3.92 goals per game. They are led Matt Leitner's 35 points (9g, 26a). Leitner has been the hottest player for Manchester, posting 13 points (5g, 8a) in the last five games, including six in two games against the Jackals. Quentin Shore is second on the team with 32 points (15g, 17a) and he's tied with Joey Diamond for the team lead with 15 goals.
Sam Brittain is Manchester's number one goalie, appearing in 24 of the team's 39 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 5-2-1-1 with a 2.98 goals-against average and a .904 save percentage in nine games.
The Monarchs power play jumped from fourth to first in the ECHL at 23.7% (33-for-139) this season following last night's 4-for-6 effort. They are even better at SNHU Arena, going 22-for-77 (28.6%), which ranks second in the ECHL on home ice. Against Elmira, the Monarchs power play is 8-for-24 (33.3%). Overall, the Monarchs have scored a power-play goal in five straight games and eight of the last 10 games.
The Jackals power play was 0-for-1 last night and are now 17th in the ECHL at 15.6% (19-for-122) on the season. They're just 9-for-79 (11.4%) away from First Arena this season. They are 3-for-18 (16.7%) in the series against Manchester.
Despite being ranked first in the ECHL, Manchester's penalty kill has allowed multiple power-play goals in four of the last five games, a stretch in which they're 11-for-20 (55.5) on the kill. Overall, their top-ranked unit is successfully killing 87.4% of opposition power plays, allowing just 19 power-play goals in 151 chances.
The Jackals penalty kill gave up four power-play goals last night and has now given up five in seven chances this weekend in Manchester. That has dropped them four spots to 23rd in the ECHL at 79.9%, but their struggles are emphasized on the road, where they sit at 75.6%, which ranks last on the road.