GAME NOTES: 12/31 vs. Brampton
Game 31 (Home Game 15)
Vs. Brampton Beast (14-12-1-2, 31 pts)
Sunday, December 31, 2017 - 6:05pm ET
U.S. Bank Arena - Cincinnati, OH
Overview: The Cyclones wrap up 2017 on Sunday evening with home matchup with the Brampton Beast. Cincinnati is coming off a 2-1 loss to the Indy Fuel on Saturday night in their second game of a three-in-three, and third of a four game in five day stretch.
Last Night 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.
Friday Night Recap: The Cincinnati Cyclones (18-10-1-0) took down the Quad City Mallards, 5-4 in a shootout, on Friday night. Forward Winston Day Chief netted a pair, while forward Alex Kile and defenseman Anthony Florentino each netted a goal in regulation, while forward Justin Danforth scored the only goal in the shootout for the Cyclones. The Cyclones were outshot, 33-30, with goaltenders Jason Kasdorf and Jonas Johansson combining to stop 29 in the win.
Wednesday Night Recap: The Cincinnati Cyclones (17-10-1-0) defeated the Ft. Wayne Komets, 5-3 on Wednesday night, in front of close to 7,500 fans at U.S. Bank Arena. Forward Justin Vaive led the way with a pair of goals, while defenseman Eric Knodel along with forwards Dominic Zombo and Jesse Schultz added lone tallies for the Cyclones. The Cyclones outshot the Komets, 33-22, with goaltender Anthony Peters stopping 19 in the win.
Previewing Brampton: The Beast head to the Queen City for just the second time ever, and are coming off a two-game road split with the Greenville Swamp Rabbits. Overall, Brampton has won four of their last six games, and are fifth in a crowded North Division, just three points back of Reading, Wheeling, and Adirondack who are all tied with 34 points. They enter Sunday with the League’s 10th best penalty kill at 83.8%, and are tied for fifth with four shorthanded goals. They are led by forward Brandon Marino who has accounted for a team-leading nine goals and 18 assists. He is followed by forwards Chris Leveille who has seven goals and is tied for the team lead with 18 assists as well, and Alex Foster who has totaled 17 points (6g, 11a) between the Beast and Rapid City Rush. In goal, Andrew D’Agostini leads all active goaltenders with a 3.09 goals-against average and a .899 save percentage, to go along with a 5-2-0-1 record.
Inside the Series: Sunday evening against Brampton will be the third of four meetings between the Cyclones and Beast this season, with the teams spliting a two-game series in Brampton early in December. The teams will do battle once more on March 11 in Brampton.
Next Game Preview: The Cyclones have a few days off before they head to Toledo next Friday. Cincinnati has dropped two of the first three meetings with the Walleye this season, and the teams are slated to meet four more times after Friday.
Day by Day, Goal by Goal: Forward Winston Day Chief scored the lone goal in Saturday’s 2-1 loss to the Indy Fuel, and lit the lamp twice in Friday’s 5-4 shootout win over the Quad City Mallards. He now has eight goals in his last eight games, including his first ECHL hat trick in a 6-1 win over the Mallards on October 15th. He currently ranks fourth on the Cyclones with 12 goals.
First for the Kid: Cyclones defenseman Anthony Florentino netted his first pro goal in 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 Friday’s 5-4 shootout win over the Mallards, however he is still tied for fourth in ECHL scoring with 35 points (13g, 22a). 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 33-22 in the first period this season, and are 11-5-0-0 when leading after 20 minutes. Additionally, Cincinnati is 13-4-0-0 when scoring first, and 9-1-0-0 when scoring the first two goals of the game.
Feeling the VAIVE-be: Cyclones forward Justin Vaive had a pair of goals Wednesday’s 5-3 win over the Ft. Wayne Komets. He also recorded his second career ECHL hat trick in the first period of last Friday’s 7-4 win over the Quad City Mallards, and has seven goals and four assists in his last seven games. He is the fourth Cyclone to record a hat trick for Cincinnati this season, joining forward Justin Danforth and Winston Day Chief, and defenseman Eric Knodel.
Peters Receives Second AHL Call: Cyclones goaltender Anthony Peters has been called up the Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Penguins of the American Hockey League (AHL). This marks Peters’ second AHL assignment of the season, as the Penguins also pulled him up for three games from December 1-6. The Blyth, ON, native has posted a 10-4-1-0 record with the Cyclones this season, and currently ranks fourth in the ECHL with a 2.34 goal-against average, and is tied for fifth with a .925 save percentage. He has won six of his last seven starts, allowing two goals or fewer in four of those contests, and has stopped 24 or more shots in 11 of his 16 games played this season.
Lending a Helping Hand: Forward Shawn O’Donnell dished out a season-high four assists in 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 31 points (10g, 21) have him tied for eighth in ECHL scoring.
We Are, We Are....The Youth of the Nation: Rookie forward Justin Danforth has accounted for four goals and four assists in his last six games, and sits atop of the ECHL’s rookie leaderboard, and is tied for third in overall scoring with 36 points (17g, 19a). He has amassed 11 goals and 13 assists over his last 18 games.
Second Line Prowess: The line of Brandon McNally, Daniel Muzito-Bagenda, and Winston Day Chief have led the Cyclones offensively over the last nine games, totaling 10 goals and 19 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 29 goals and 43 assists over the last 16 outings.
Limited Opportunity: Cincinnati is seventh in the ECHL, averaging 2.87 goals against per game, and have allowed three or fewer goals in 13 of their last 17 games. Additionally, they have given up more than four goals on just six occasions.
Finishing What They Started: The Cyclones have a 13-1-0-0 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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