Game 5: Elmira Jackals (2-2-0-0) at Adirondack Thunder (2-0-1-1)
7:05 p.m., First Arena, Elmira, New York
The Jackals continue their three-game week against the Adirondack Thunder as the series shifts to First Arena tonight as part of the Jackals' Hat Trick or Treat night. It is the second of 10 head-to-head matches this season, with five to be played in Glens Falls and five to be played in Elmira. They'll wrap up the week with a return trip to Glens Falls tomorrow night.
The Thunder have opened the season with points in each of their first four games, but have lost the last two, one in overtime and one in a shootout. They started with three straight games against the Manchester Monarchs before losing in a shootout to the Jackals Tuesday night. After this weekend's home-and-home series with the Jackals, the Thunder have another three games with the Monarchs.
The Jackals opened the week with a shootout win over the Thunder Tuesday night, improving their record to 2-2-0-0. They have alternated wins and losses through the first four games of the season and are 1-1-0-0 at both home and on the road.
Call (607) 734-7825, visit First Arena Box Office or click here.
Jackals Pregame at 6:50 p.m. Radio: 1410 WELM
Last time out
John Muse made 39 saves in regulation and overtime while Tyson Fawcett scored the only goal in the shootout as the Jackals edged the Adirondack Thunder, 2-1, Tuesday at the Glens Falls Civic Center.
Muse was the difference for the Jackals, keeping his team in the game during a first period that saw the Thunder outshoot the Jackals 19-3. Muse stopped all 19 in the period to keep it a 0-0 game entering the second. Adirondack got on the board in the second with Brian Ward snapping a shot in from the left circle at 1:12 of the period. It remained 1-0 Thunder until the Jackals pulled even with a power-play goal at 16:37 of the second. Steven Kaunisto found twine with a wrist shot from the high slot that got through traffic in front.
After a scoreless third period and overtime, the game went to a shootout where Fawcett scored in the bottom of round one and Muse shut the door on three Thunder shooters to give the Jackals the 2-1 win.
Scouting the Thunder The Thunder have points in each of their first four games to begin the 2016-17 season. At 2-0-1-1, they have six points, tied for the most points in the North Division with Reading. The Thunder's first three games were against the Manchester Monarchs, winning both games in Manchester opening weekend before dropping last week's game in Glens Falls. They'll play three more with the Monarchs next week. Adirondack is 2-0-0-0 on the road, but 0-0-1-1 at home.
Four Thunder players have four points through four games this season. Ty Loney (2g, 2a) and Peter MacArthur (1g, 3a) were held scoreless Tuesday against the Jackals while rookies Mikkel Aagaard (1g, 3a) and Alex Wall (4a) both had assists in the loss. 15 players have at least one point and nine have at least two points through four games.
In goal, rookie Mason McDonald started the first three games, allowing 10 goals, giving him a 3.16 goals-against average. With a 2-0-1-0 record, the 34th overall pick in the 2014 NHL Draft has a .863 save percentage. Prior to Tuesday's game, Ken Appleby was reassigned to the Thunder from Albany and the second-year member of the Thunder started against the Jackals, allowing one goal on 16 shots. He was 17-9-2 in 29 games with the Thunder last season.
The Jackals and Thunder will meet 10 times in the 2016-17 regular season, with five games at First Arena and five games at the Glens Falls Civic Center. This is the second of three matches this week and then they don't square off again until Dec. 22.
Last season the Jackals won the season series, winning seven of the 11 head-to-head matches. Elmira went 4-1 in the five games at the Glens Falls Civic Center and split the six games at First Arena. Two games went past regulation, with the Jackals earning two shootout victories in Elmira. The Jackals won the last three games of the series.
Adirondack has had 10 power plays after four games this season, going 1-for-10 (10.0%). They went 0-for-4 Tuesday night against the Jackals and rank 17th in the league on the power play.
The Jackals power play went 1-for-3 Tuesday night against the Thunder, pushing their mark to 4-for-16 (25.0%) on the season. Only Quad City, with five, has more power-play goals scored than the Jackals. Overall the Jackals rank fourth in the ECHL with the man advantage.
The Thunder penalty kill entered Tuesday 6-for-6, but allowed one goal in three shorthanded situations against the Jackals. At 8-for-9 (88.9%), their penalty kill ranks 12th in the ECHL. The Thunder have the fourth fewest penalty minutes per game at 7.50.
Elmira's penalty kill went 3-for-3 Tuesday night to improve to 10-for-13 (76.9%) on the season, which ranks 24th in the ECHL.