FALCONS GAME PREVIEW: SPRINGFIELD AT WORCESTER, GAME #34
Springfield Falcons (19-9-2-3) at Worcester Sharks (18-13-1-2)
Friday, January 11, 2013
RADIO: (presented by FalconsWireless.com) WHYN NewsTalk 560 AM/WHYN.com
Falcons Game Notes (PDF)
IN JUST A FEW HOURS...
The Springfield Falcons and the Worcester Sharks kick off their eight-game season series at the DCU Center, with the opening face-off scheduled for 7:30 p.m. The Falcons head into tonight's contest coming off of a 4-1 road win over the Providence Bruins last Sunday. Springfield has a five-point lead with two games in hand on the Bridgeport Sound Tigers for first place in the Northeast Division entering the 14th weekend of the 2012-2013 campaign and takes on a Worcester team that has won nine of its last 15 games and is in second in the Atlantic Division. The Falcons went 5-2-1 in eight contests against the Sharks in 2012-2013.
Springfield returns home to the MassMutual Center to host Providence on Saturday at 7:00 p.m. Comcast is the presenting sponsor of Saturday's game. Fans can win a free bicycle courtesy of Gus Coelho Auto Repair at 442 Holyoke St. in Ludlow as part of "Cycle Saturday" at the MassMutual Center (GusAutoRepair.net).
Tonight's broadcast is presented by FalconsWireless.com and starts 15 minutes before the opening face-off on WHYN NewsTalk 560 AM, WHYN.com, the iHeartRadio App, and AHLLive.com.
Single-game tickets to see the Falcons in 2012-2013 can be purchased at the MassMutual Center Box Office from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m., Monday through Friday, 10 a.m. through game time on Saturday home dates, and starting four hours prior to Sunday home contests. Fans can also purchase tickets by logging onto Ticketmaster.com. For information about discounted group packages to Falcons home games, call (413) 739-GOAL (4625).
WINS PILE UP
Curtis McElhinney posted his league-leading 17th win on Sunday and broke a personal saves record he set less than one month earlier. McElhinney’s 47 saves in the weekend finale were one more than his previous mark of 46, registered in a 4-2 win in St. John’s on Dec. 8. His save percentage jumped to .930, good for fourth in the league. The eighth-year pro continues to lead the AHL with a Falcons-record six shutouts, and is eighth with a 2.19 goals-against average.
BIG DAY FOR ‘JAM’
Jonathan Audy-Marchessault notched his first two-goal game of the season and fourth of his career on Sunday as part of a three-point afternoon. The second-year pro from Quebec City reclaimed sole possession of first place on the Falcons in assists with 22 and is tied for eighth in the AHL in that category. Audy-Marchessault is tied for ninth in the league with 33 points, trailing only Cam Atkinson for the club lead.
CRAIG CELEBRATES IN STYLE
Ryan Craig celebrated his 31st birthday on Sunday by extending his point streak to five games (4g-1a) with a late empty-net goal. He tied Cam Atkinson for the second time on the weekend for ninth in Falcons history in goals scored, depositing his 49th tally in a Springfield sweater.
DECORATED D-MAN JOINS FALCONS
Springfield signed veteran defenseman Bryan Helmer on Thursday. Helmer is the leading scorer in AHL history among defensemen with 562 points and also is tops among blueliners with 433 assists. He will become the third player in league history to participate in 19 AHL seasons once he takes the ice for Springfield.
The Falcons have a 7-1-1-0 Friday record this year.
Springfield improved to 8-1-0-0 in Sunday competition in 2012-2013 with the win over Providence..
THREE TO TANGO
The Falcons are now 4-1-0-0 in the third game of a three-in-three stretch this season.
ONE AND DONE
Springfield has allowed exactly one goal in two of the last four games after either collecting a shutout or permitting two or more tallies against in their first 29 contests of 2012-2013.
OBEYING THE LAW
The Falcons remain the only team in the league without a 10-minute or a game misconduct this season. Springfield is the only club without a 10-minute misconduct.
The Falcons are one of two AHL teams (Toronto Marlies), including the only one in the Eastern Conference, to have a top five offense and defense. Springfield is fourth-best in the AHL on offense at 3.30 goals/game, and is second on defense at 2.39 goals/game. The Falcons’ +30 scoring differential is third best in the league, trailing the Syracuse Crunch (+33) and Toronto (+31).