Evansville IceMen Weekly
THE ICEMEN MAJESTICS: Completing the sweep of their 4-games in 6-nights work week, the Evansville IceMen of the Central Hockey League have strengthened and lengthened their lead atop the Turner Conference standings to three points over their principal archrivals, the Fort Wayne Komets. Under the astute and argute auspices of second year General Manager/Head Coach Rich Kromm, the IceMen have elevated their season overall record to a lustrous 49(32-13-4) totaling 68-points. In the midst of an ambitious February docket consisting of 15-games in 27-days, the IceMen, despite being beset with injuries and suspensions, have been undaunted and untrammeled in staying the steady course, winning with great aplomb, alacrity and frequency. They will embark on another strenuous stretch of 4-games in 5-days this week seeking to protect that 3-ponts advantage over Fort Wayne 50(31-16-3) 65-points with 1-game in hand on the Komets who are 6(2-3-1) in their last 6-decisions. Evansville "Men of Ice" have opened up an 8-points advantage over third place Missouri 49(28-17-4) 60-points and an 11-points bulge over fourth place Quad City 50(28-21-1) 57 and Rapid City 48(26-17-5) 57. This week, the IceMen will continue their current 4-game homestand with three appearances at their home of the fabulous Ford Center, downtown Evansville. It's the first-ever Education Day Game, Wednesday morning at 10:30 am when the first-place squad caps a two-game home set with the Arizona Sun Dogs. Berry Conference kingpin Wichita comes calling Friday night before Fort Wayne touches down in our town for some Saturday night action with the IceMen sextet. The week's workload is capped Sunday in a matinee affair at Dayton against the Gems.
MORE PRIMO PROMOS PRESENTED: The IceMen have attained the reputation of presenting the best promotion nights in the CHL and all of minor pro hockey at their home of the fabulous Ford Center. This week may be the best yet! Wednesday morning at 10:30 am will be the first-ever Education Day Game when the IceMen complete their two game home series against Arizona. School-age students throughout the area will be making class field trips by attending and watching their hometown first place pro hockey team in action. Friday night when the IceMen guest Wichita, it has been designated as Pet Adoption Night from New Hope Animal Rescue in Henderson, KY. In addition, to inject some zest and zeal into the Friday night, the world renowned "Albert the Sport Juggler" will be on hand to perform his unique-technique talents. The IceMen promotions department will crown the homestand week when they present the Indianapolis Colts Cheerleaders as they entertain the IceMen loyal, avid and rabid fans Saturday night when Fort Wayne comes to town.
"ICEMEN LIVE PRESENTED BY COORS LIGHT": After a one week hiatus due to travel conflicts, "IceMen Live Presented by Coors Light" returns Monday night for another lively, entertaining evening of family fun, prizes and surprises, live from Show-Me's East. This week, the "Voice of the IceMen," Terry Ficorelli's guests will be the CHL's premiere goal-scoring cannoneer, Brian Bicek and recent acquisition, defenseman Chad Langlais. The program is presented every Monday night throughout the IceMen hockey season from 7:00 pm to 9:00 pm on the flagship home of the IceMen WEOA-AM 1400 and 1400amweoa.com.
ICEMEN ATTENDANCE RISING: This past Sunday, the IceMen were making their first home appearance since February 10th when they severed a 3-game home losing skein with a spine-tingling, spellbinding comeback 3-2 OT triumph over intra-conference foe Dayton. Upon returning home after a highly-successful 4-game road excursion, the IceMen attracted another extraordinary crowd of 5,846, their largest Sunday crowd of the campaign. Presently, the IceMen rank fifth in the league in average attendance at an impressive 4,603 per game.
RAMPAGING RECORD: Through the first 49-games of the season, the IceMen have compiled a sterling record of 49(32-13-4) 68-points. Their latest win streak has reached 6-in a row which equals Evansville's and the CHL's longest win streak of the current campaign. The Coach Kromm crew's last setback was back on February 8th at home when Fort Wayne ambushed them, 4-3. The IceMen are 8(7-1-0) in their last 8-starts. Since the beginning of the new calendar year, the IceMen have been virtually indomitable, sustaining a scant 4-setbacks in 23-games in that span; 23(17-4-2). Their second longest win streak of the year has been 5-consecutively; longest undefeated skeins of the season have been a CHL league-wide best 12(10-0-2) and 7(6-0-1). The IceMen have not been saddled with a losing month thus far this season; October 2(1-0-1); November 11(8-3-0); December 13(6-6-1); January 13(10-1-2); February 10(7-3-0).
FLASHBACK FACT: The IceMen are the most improved team in the CHL this season. The IceMen first place record for the season stands at 49(32-13-4) 68-points. One year ago after 49-games, their record was 49(16-26-7) 39-points. The IceMen have doubled their total number of wins from one year ago (16 to 32); have half the number of defeats (26 to 13) and 29-more points (39 to 68). Evansville's final record last season was 66(21-32-13) 55-points. With still 17-more games remaining for this season, the IceMen have 11-more wins, 13-more points and 19-less losses than all of last season.
FORD FLOURISHING: After enduring an uncharacteristic, season longest 3-game losing streak at home, the IceMen have resiliently and buoyantly bounced back with two consecutive victories at their Ford Center homestead. In the process, they have upgraded their home log to a splendid 25(17-7-1) 35-points. The IceMen are a superb 12(9-3-0) in their last dozen dates on the home base. Their longest home win streaks have been 7-consecutively and 4-in a row. Last year's home record was a rather inferior 30(11-13-6) 28-points. Evansville has accrued 6-more wins, 6-fewer losses and gathered 7-more points than all of last season in home ice performances.
INVADE AND PERVADE: One of the greatest turning points and climactic junctures of the current campaign occurred in the IceMen recent, arduous 4-game Southern road expedition. The IceMen were impeccably magnificent in sweeping their entire Southern sojourn with a perfect 4(4-0-0) record; Two triumphs were extracted from the Oilers in Tulsa and the middle two spirited away from the Rio Grande Valley on consecutive nights against the Killer Bees. Overall, the IceMen have advanced their latest road win skein to 5-in a row, representing their longest road win streak of the season. Their last taste of the bitter herb of defeat abroad was back last month on January 28th when they trembled at Dayton, 4-3; their lone loss in the entire month of January. Their second longest road win streak has been 4-in succession; longest unblemished streak has been 6(5-0-1); second longest in this category has been 5(3-0-2). The IceMen boast the CHL Turner Conference best road record at a sparkling 24(15-6-3) which is the second best overall in the CHL. Since the inception of the new calendar year, the IceMen have incurred a scant single setback in hostile territory; last 11(8-1-2). Evansville's road record for all of last season was 36(10-19-7) 27-points.
VERY BERRY GOOD: The IceMen have been prospering at the expense of the Berry Conference competition this campaign. The hometown team is presently riding the rising rapids of a 6-game win streak outside their own conference colony. In the process, they have enhanced their Berry Conference record to a supreme 9(8-1-0). Last year, the IceMen assembled a rather desolate mark of 13(3-9-1) against Berry Conference opposition.
GLAMOROUS AVARICE: Flaws have been few under the most scrutinizing magnifying glass defensively for the IceMen; especially during their latest skyrocketing, meteoric surge. In winning 6-in a row, the kinetic "Kromminator" contingent has practiced frugality totality in allowing only 10-GA for a GAA of an avarice 1.67. In registering a record of 8(7-1-0) in their last 8-dates, the commitment to strong and stellar defensive performance has been enormous as the "Icers" have permitted only 18-GA for a GAA of a stingy 2.25.
THE ACE SHOWCASE: Todd Robinson 49(17-54-71) continues to top the CHL scoring derby with Brian Bicek 49(31-22-53) listed 9th and Nicklas Lindberg 48(12-36-48) ranked #18. Bicek's 31-goals are league foremost while Robinson's 54-assists are 14-more than the rest of the league and his 23-PPA also the best of the rest in the loop. Bicek's 4-SHG lead the league with Robinson tied for 2nd most with 3-SHG. Mario Boilard (144) ranks 3rd in the CHL in PIM. Bicek's +20 rating ranks him as 5th best. In CHL defense scoring, the IceMen rank 1-2. Steve Makway is on top with 47(4-33-37); Matt Gens is runner-up 49(8-26-34); Philippe Plante is 12th 48(9-18-27). Makway (33) and Gens (26) are also 1-2 in assists for defense while Plante (3) and Gens (3) rank tied for 2nd in GWG. Plante's 4-SHA are still #1. Gens 13-PPA tie him for circuit 2nd among the defense. Gens 141-SOG list him at #3. In CHL rookie scoring, Malcolm Gwilliam 49(13-15-28) is #12; his +8 rating is 3rd best. In the goaltending department, Bryan Gillis is rated 3rd best with a 2.29 GAA and .927 SPCT. Gillis boasts the league's best overall record and road record at 26(21-4-1) overall and 10(9-1-0) respectively. Pier-Olivier Pelletier ranks 10th with a 2.75 GAA.
TAPE-TO-TAPE TODD: Veteran center Todd Robinson has never been better in elevating his overall excellent play to yet another level. During his first place club's latest torrid winning spell, "T. Rob" has been of monumental majesty. The league's leading point-meister has extended his latest point streak to 10-games, matching his previous season-high. The "Robinsonian" rampage has produced 17-points in that span with 10(6-11-17). Moreover, he tops the team in PPG with 6 and multi-point games with 17. Robinson has connected on the IceMen GWG in 3 of the team's last 7-victories with 2 of those by way of extra time overtime and the OTSO.
BRIAN BREAKAWAY BOULEVARD: Jet-streaming center/left wing Brian Bicek is enjoying the finest hour of his four-year pro career. "Ice-Bice-Baby" has electrified the league with his blinding, blazing breakaway speed and his velvet touch in around the enemy cage. "The Pocket Rocket" recently completed his second 5-game goal-scoring streak of the season with 5(6-1-7). He is still on a 10game point streak as well with 10(8-4-12). Of his league-high and all-time career-best 31-goals, 25 of them have been stoked over the last 31-games.
P.O. ROAD SHOW AGLOW: Four year goaltender Pier-Olivier Pelletier has been extraordinarily successful in exorcizing the woes, throes and travail of an uncharacteristic 6-game winless spell at 6(0-5-1) The former #2 draft choice of the NHL Phoenix Coyotes was at the top his game, once again, in backstopping his team to 3-crucial conquests during the 4-game sweep of the Southern road swing the past week. In posting a perfect mark of 3(3-0-0) on the escapade, Pelletier authored a GAA of a masterful 1.92.
GILLIS WILL US: CHL Rookie of the Year candidate Bryan Gillis has been the precocious master of his domain and divine province. In his lone start for the past week, "The Great Gilly in Goal" fashioned yet another masterpiece in spearheading his team to a 3-1 Sunday verdict on home ice against Arizona. The first-year phenom has seen his latest win streak reach 4-in succession; last 4(4-0-0). Moreover he has carded a brilliant mark of 15(14-1-0) in his last 15-starts. Gillis has accounted for 16 of his team's last 19-overall victories.
ON TRACK WITH "BIG MACK": Eight-year veteran defenseman Steve Makway is operating at full, maximum and optimum efficiency and proficiency at this hour of the season. The league's top scoring rearguard has been averaging nearly a point a game in recent IceMen action. In his last 22-games, he has assembled 20-points on 1-goal, 19-assists; 22(1-19-20). His lofty +15 rating ranks as the second best for the IceMen and best among Evansville defensemen.
ALL THAT GENS JAZZ: Six-year pro Matt Gens has been the consummate workhorse on the IceMen ostensibly depleted defense. Logging 40-minutes a game the CHL All-Star has climbed to circuit second in CHL defense scoring. In his last 4-games; 4(1-4-5), averaging over a point a game. One of his 3-GWG has been on OT/GWG for the first place team.
THE PLANTE PLANET: Stellar veteran defenseman Philippe Plante has emerged as one of the most exemplary team leaders in the CHL. The 13-year consummate pro has led the way for his first place team through his poise, polish, professionalism and composure no matter how daunting the situation may be. His 9-total goals as well as 5-PPG top all IceMen defensemen in both key, touch-in-the-clutch categories. His stellar +13 rating ties him with Nicklas Lindberg for third best for the IceMen squadron.
POWER PLAY PRECISION: The IceMen extra man band is back on the beam following a brief interlude which was rift with vicissitudes. Right up to date today, the IceMen power play is 2 for the last 2; 100%; 4 for the last 7; 57.1%; 5 for the last 12; 41.7% and 6 for the last 18; 33.3%. For the season, Evansville power play has ascended to circuit second at 41-198; 20.8%. The penalty-killing cast of characters continues to make live less-than-ideal for the adversarial power play operations. Evansville still ranks in the top spot with an efficiency rating of 85.8% with the opposition competition being 33-233. Evansville's 10-SHG rank a lofty third best in the league.
MINING THE MILESTONES: Brian Bicek (98) is 2-goals away from pro career 100 with 58 of those goals coming in less than two full seasons thus far in Evansville. Bicek has played in 191-consecutive games dating back to the 2009-10 season with the IHL Muskegon Lumberjacks. Last week, Todd Robinson surpassed the 1,200 points plateau in his illustrious 13-year pro career; 854(328-877-1,205). Matt Gens (188) is 12-points shy of 200. Nicklas Lindberg (291) is 9-assists away from 300. Steve Makway (188) is 12-assists away from pro career 200. Sean O'Connor (92) is 8-assists shy of 100.
FEW FUN FAST FACTS FROM "FIC": The IceMen remain undefeated both on Tuesday 6(5-0-1) and Sunday 8(7-0-1) for a combined mark of 14(12-0-2). The IceMen continue to flourish on Friday with an overall mark of 15(12-3-0) and a perfect 6(6-0-0) on the road. They are undefeated on the road in February at 5(5-0-0). The IceMen are the best first period team in the league, outscoring their opponents, 61-37 overall. When the IceMen surrender 2-GA or less, they are perfect at 27(27-0-0). When they score 4 or more goals, they are 19(17-2-0). When they outshoot the opposition, the record is 21(18-3-0).
THE ICEMEN GAME CALENDAR FOR THIS WEEK:
WEDNESDAY, FEBRUARY 22ND ARIZONA AT THE ICEMEN 10:30 AM
The IceMen and the Sun Dogs will wrap-up the 2-game series in Evansville on the IceMen first-ever Education Day Game at the Ford Center. The IceMen prevailed in game one on Sunday, 3-1, on the strength of a 3-goal unanswered second period resurgence that erased a 1-0 deficit. The IceMen lifetime record against Arizona is 2(2-0-0) with both wins coming in Evansville.
FRIDAY, FEBRUARY 24TH WICHITA AT THE ICEMEN 7:15 PM
For the third time this season, the two conference kingpins will collide with the series squared at 2(1-1-0). Home ice advantage has represented no advantage whatsoever thus far with the IceMen extracting a 5-2 verdict on the road back on December 2nd and the Thunder reciprocating December 31st in Evansville with a late come-from-behind 7-5 triumph to sabotage the IceMen New Year's celebration.
SATURDAY, FEBRUARY 25TH FORT WAYNE AT THE ICEMEN 7:15 PM
Potentially, once again, this could develop into another battle supreme for the Turner Conference's top perch with the IceMen broaching the new week with a 3-point advantage over the Komets with Evansville holding one game in hand. The IceMen trail in the season series, 10(3-6-1), having dropped 6 of the last 7-bouts and 4 of the last 5 on home ice.
SUNDAY, FEBRUARY 26TH THE ICEMEN AT DAYTON 3:00 PM
The IceMen and the Gems will clash for the 10th and final time this season with the IceMen the more predominant team as their 10(9-1-0) series lead would attest. In Dayton, the IceMen have compiled a mark of 4(3-1-0), bowing in their last trip to historical Hara Arena back on January 28th, 4-3. That setback halted the IceMen 12-game undefeated streak at 12(10-0-2) and denied their bid to complete the month of January undefeated.
THE ICEMEN ON YOUR SMART PHONES AND I-PHONES: IceMen fans who own Smart Phones and I-Phones can now take the IceMen game broadcasts and Monday night radio show, "IceMen Live Presented by Coors Light" wherever they go. For more information, visit the IceMen web-site at www.evansvilleicemen.com.
THE ICEMEN ON WEOA-AM 1400 & THE ICEMEN RADIO NETWORK: Evansville and the Tri-State, your pro hockey team plays here! All of the IceMen game broadcasts are on flagship station home WEOA-AM 1400 and the world-wide internet at 1400amweoa.com and the IceMen Radio Network. WMSK-AM 1550 in Morganfield, KY also is there on the air for every game while WITZ-AM 990 and WITZ-FM 104.7, Jasper, IN carry a select schedule of games numbering between 23-30 for the season.
THE ICEMEN DAILY UPDATES ARE EVERYWHERE ON THE AIR: Continuing with their expanded coverage, the IceMen daily update report can be found on 16-different radio stations throughout the Tri-State region including flagship home WEOA-AM 1400, Monday through Friday at 4:20 pm. On the Townsquare Media family of stations; WGBF-FM 103.1 at 4:40 pm; WGBF-AM 1280 at 4:50 pm; WKDQ-FM 99.5 at 4:35 pm; WJLT-FM 105.3 at 4:45 pm; WDKS-FM 106.1 at 4:35 pm; WBKR-FM 92.5 (Owensboro, KY) at 4:40 pm; WOMI-AM 1490 (Owensboro, KY) at 4:50 pm. Elsewhere, on WITZ-AM 990 and WITZ-FM 104.7, Jasper, IN at 8:20 am, 12:20 pm and 4:20 pm. WSON-AM 860 and WSON-FM 96.5 in Henderson, KY at 4:30 pm as well as on WMSK-AM 1550 at 7:30 am and 4:30 pm and WMSK-FM 101.3, Morganfield, KY at 4:25 pm. The latest addition is WYNX-FM ESPN Radio 106.7 in Mount Vernon, IN.
THE ICEMEN TICKET INFORMATION: IceMen single game tickets for all home games are on sale at the Ford Center Ticket Office and at Ticketmaster.com or by contacting the IceMen offices for various ticket plans and great group rates at (812) 421-GOAL (4625) or visit our website at www.evansvilleicemen.com.
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