Weekly Arrowhead #24

Johnstown Chiefs

April 7, 2008 - ECHL (ECHL) - Johnstown Chiefs

News Release

Johnstown, PA - The Johnstown Chiefs closed out their 20th Anniversary Season in strong fashion, and rode that momentum right into the Kelly Cup Playoffs. Now, with a 1-0 lead in the opening best-of-three series with Dayton, the Chiefs will get at least one chance to close out the series on home ice. A series win over the Bombers will set the Chiefs up for a North Division Semifinal series with Cincinnati.

Record (final regular season) - 36-30-3-3, 78 pts., 4th place North Division

Leaders (final regular season):

Goals - Ryan Garlock/Alex Imbeault: 26

Assists - Randy Rowe: 44

Points - Randy Rowe: 68

+/- - Randy Rowe: +21

PIMs - Mike Sgroi: 257

PPG - Jean Desrochers: 12

Wins - Ryan Nie: 29

GAA - Ryan Nie: 2.80

SVP - Ryan Nie: .897

Record (playoffs) - 1-0-0, lead North Div. Qtr. Finals vs. Dayton 1-0

Leaders (playoffs):

Goals - Randy Rowe: 2

Assists - R. Rowe/R. Garlock/A. Imbeault/G. Gallagher/R. Macias: 1

Points - Randy Rowe: 3

+/- - R. Rowe/R. Garlock/A. Imbeault/G. Gallagher/R. Macias: +1

PIMs - R. Rowe/A. Imbeault /R. Macias: 2

PPG - R. Rowe/A. Imbeault: 1

Wins - Ryan Nie: 1

GAA - Ryan Nie: 1.00

SVP - Ryan Nie: .962

This Week:

4/8 vs. Dayton, 7:05 p.m. (regular: 3-4-1-2, playoffs: 1-0-0)

The scene for the North Division Quarterfinal series between Johnstown and Dayton shifts to the Cambria County War Memorial for the remainder of the series. After winning Game 1, Johnstown will have at least one chance to clinch the series on home ice. The Chiefs gained a big leg up in the series by winning the opener in Dayton because wins have been hard for Dayton to come by at the War Memorial. Johnstown had a 3-0-0-2 record against the Bombers on home ice, and hold a 15-11 scoring advantage.

NOTE: If the Chiefs lose Game 2, the deciding Game 3 will be played on Wednesday, April 9 with the opening faceoff at 7:05 PM. If the Chiefs win Game 2 or 3 and advance to the North Division Semifinals against Cincinnati, the first two games of that series will be hosted by the Cyclones at U.S. Bank Arena this weekend. The first game would be on Friday, April 11 at 7:35 PM, while the second would be Saturday, April 12 also at 7:35 PM.

He Just Keeps Trucking:

When Ryan Garlock reported to the Springfield Falcons of the AHL back on March 10, he had a team-high 16-game point streak to his credit. The center from Iroquois Falls, Ontario had a more-than-impressive 12 goals and 18 assists over those 16 games, and led the team in overall scoring with 60 points. Garlock made a single-game return to help the Chiefs on March 17 against Cincinnati. He picked up one assist in that game to make his point streak 17 games long. That would end up being the second longest point streak in the ECHL this season, trailing only David Desharnais\' 27-game streak. With Garlock back in the black and gold for the playoffs, he has picked up right where he left off before he joined the Hershey Bears. He earned one assist in the 3-1 win over Dayton this past Sunday to give him 18 games (regular and postseason) with at least one point. Over those 18 games, Johnstown has a sparkling record of 11-5-2.

Day by Day:

Mon. 4/7: Practice at UPMC Health Plan Ice Rink at CCWM, 2:00 p.m.

Tues. 4/8: Chiefs vs. Dayton Bombers, Game 2; 7:05 p.m.

Wed. 4/9: Chiefs vs. Dayton Bombers, Game 3 (if necessary) 7:05 p.m. or TBD

Thurs. 4/10: TBD

Fri. 4/11: TBD

Sat. 4/12: TBD

Sun. 4/13: TBD

Last Week: (3-0-1)

4/2 at Reading: W 4-1

Johnstown extended its winning streak to four games overall, and four in a row over Reading, with a 4-1 win in the season series finale last Wednesday. The Chiefs got first-period goals from Mike Sgroi (25th, 5:24) and Alex Imbeault (23rd, 13:20), and the Royals wouldn\'t sniff the lead the rest of the game. Kevin Saurette did get the only goal of the game for Reading by scoring on a shorthanded breakaway at :23 of the second, but Andrew Penner slammed the door the rest of the way. Andrew Martens\' (9th, 7:48) third period tally re-upped the Chiefs\' two-goal lead, and then Mike Knight (9th, 11:57) iced the game with a power play tally. Domenic Maiani assisted on Imbeault\'s first-period goal for his first professional point, and Penner\'s victory was his sixth of the year. The Chiefs ended the year 5-4-1 against Reading.

4/4 vs. Wheeling: W 3-0

The Chiefs closed out their 2007-08 home schedule against the same opponent they opened it against, the Wheeling Nailers, and ended up with a much better result this time around. The 3-0 triumph was the Chiefs\' third shutout of the season, and second consecutive for goaltender Ryan Nie. By the end of the game, Nie would end up with 142:22 of scoreless hockey. Joey Olson (15th, 5:30) used a quick stick to poke a puck past Curtis Darling for the eventual game winning goal in the first period. Alex Imbeault would pick up a goal each in the first (24th, 9:35) and second (25th, 8:31) to set the final score. Johnstown ended the season 9-4-0 against Wheeling, more wins than against any other opponent.

4/5 at Dayton: L 4-3 OT

Johnstown\'s regular season concluded with a tinge of disappointment as Dayton rallied from a 3-2 third period deficit, and picked up the overtime win. After Dayton held a 1-0 lead through the first, the Chiefs erupted for three second-period markers, against Dayton\'s one, to take the 3-2 advantage. Alex Imbeault closed out the regular season with a three-game goal streak, earning that with Johnstown\'s first goal of the second (26th, 4:02). Jason Spence (6th, 16:19) and Brian Deeth (6th, 18:29) finished off the second-period scoring for Johnstown, offsetting Mike Walsh\'s goal for Dayton, and giving the Chiefs their first lead. However, it was Britt Dougherty scoring with 20 seconds left in regulation, and Greg Labenski scored the OT winner on the power play. The Chiefs finished their regular season series against Dayton with a 3-4-1-2 record.

4/6 at Dayton: W 3-1

The Chiefs showed no lingering effects of the pervious night\'s overtime defeat, as they opened up the 2008 Kelly Cup Playoffs with a resounding victory over Dayton at the Nutter Center. In the first, Ray Macias made a key play, skating coast-to-coast, to set up Randy Rowe in front and Rowe scored (1st, :39) on the backhand to give the Chiefs a lead they wouldn\'t relinquish. Johnstown\'s power play erupted in the second as Rowe (2nd, 1:36) scored his second of the game on a 5-on-3, and Alex Imbeault scored 5-on-4 (1st, 2:02) giving him four in five games (including regular season) to give Johnstown a 3-0 lead. Dayton\'s Brad Bonello erased a chance for a third straight shutout for Ryan Nie with his own power play goal at 4:54 of the second. At the time of Bonello\'s goal, Nie had gone 167:17 without giving up a goal, and has only given up one in his last three starts (0.33 goals-against average).

Home\'s Where the Wins Are:

The Chiefs\' 3-0 triumph over Wheeling in the home finale last Friday gave them 20 wins at the UPMC Health Plan Ice Rink at the Cambria County War Memorial on the season. With Johnstown picking up 18 home wins in 2006-07 17 in 2005-06, and 14 in 2004-05, the Chiefs have now improved on their win total at home for three straight years, a first for the team. That amount of wins is the highest total since a team-record 26 home wins in 2003-04. Counting the 03-04 season, Johnstown has now won 20 or more home games five times. Those seasons and their totals are: 2007-08 (20), 2003-04 (26), 2001-02 (23), 2000-01 (20), 1994-95 (20), and 1993-94 (21).

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