Taking on the middle leg of a grueling three-week road trip, the Checkers picked up another sweep before seeing their hot streak come to a halt in Syracuse. The team now has one last three-game week to go before returning home to Charlotte.

Week in Review

Team Statistics

  • Overall record
    10-4-0
  • Home record
    2-2-0
  • Road record
    8-2-0
  • Last week's record
    2-1-0
  • Last 10 games
    7-3-0
  • Division Standings
    2nd
  • Conference Standings
    3rd
  • League Standings
    5th

Checkers 5, Utica 2

The high-flying Checkers used another strong start to pick up a mid-week win over the Comets. Beginning with Andrew Miller’s tally 26 seconds into the contest, the visitors notching three goals in the opening frame to build a 3-1 lead through 20. The two sides exchanged goals in the middle frame, but any Comets’ rally was snuffed out by Jeremy Smith, who turned aside all 14 shots he saw in the third en route to a 33-save win. Full recap

Checkers 5, Utica 2

The Checkers’ final meeting with Utica for the season was a closer affair than the night before, but another flurry of goals led the visitors to another victory on the road. Nic Roy’s finish on a shorthanded two-on-one broke the ice in the first, then Clark Bishop followed in the middle frame with his first of the year. The home squad wouldn’t roll over, however, as Jayson Megna lit the lamp in the final minute of the frame to pull Utica within one with 20 minutes to go. The Checkers wasted no time reasserting themselves in the third, with Andrew Poturalski and Janne Kuokkanen each finding the back of the net inside of the first five minutes. The Comets would answer back once more but it wouldn’t be enough, as Bishop’s second of the night later in the frame would seal a lopsided 5-2 final. Full recap

Syracuse 5, Checkers 3

Wrapping up a busy week on the road in Syracuse, the Checkers couldn’t quite keep their winning ways rolling. The defending conference champs broke out early, netting three unanswered tallies in the first period. The Checkers punched back with power-play goals both in the waning moments of the first and early on in the second to pull within one, followed by both squads trading goals in the back half of the frame to set up a 4-3 Crunch advantage heading into the third. Charlotte would once again pull within a goal in the final five minutes of regulation thanks to Aleksi Saarela’s third of the year, but they couldn’t find the equalizer. Eric Condra iced the contest with his second of the night late in regulation, snapping the Checkers’ road streak. Full recap

Three Stars Of The Week

Roy

3rd Star

Nicolas Roy

2g, 1a
Poturalski

2nd Star

Andrew Poturalski

2g, 1a
Miller

1st Star

Andrew Miller

1g, 3a

Notables

LIGHTING THE LAMP

The Checkers currently sit in a tie for the most goals scored this season in the AHL, even with a Laval Rocket team that has played one more game, and rank second in goals-per-game, trailing only the Penguins, who have played one fewer game.

Charlotte has recorded at least five goals in eight of its 14 games this season, including three of the team’s last five, and are a perfect 8-0-0 in those games. Additionally, the Checkers have scored three or more goals in 12 of 14 games this season, holding a 9-3-0 record in those instances.

While their offense has been prolific, the Checkers have only been averaging 29.07 shots per game, ranking them 21st in the AHL. The Checkers have been outshot in eight of their 14 games this season, but are a perfect 6-0-0 when outshooting their opponent.

STRONG FINISHERS

Cam
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Last Week's News

So far this season the Checkers’ offense has become more and more productive as the game goes on. With 20 total goals in second periods and 22 in third periods, the Checkers are the only team in the AHL with at least 20 goals in multiple frames. In fact, that third-period total is the second-highest among any single period in the AHL, as is the team’s plus-nine goal differential.

PLAYING OUT IN FRONT

The Checkers have been at their best this season when jumping out in front and playing with a lead. The team is a perfect 5-0-0 when scoring the game’s first goal, as well as 4-0-0 when leading after one period and 8-0-0 when leading after two.

NED STAYS PERFECT

Friday was another start and another win for netminder Alex Nedeljkovic, who improved his perfect start to 7-0-0. Nedeljkovic, who is tied for second in the AHL in wins and 10th in goals-against average, is one of only two goalies in the league with more than two starts who has yet to lose a game in regulation or overtime this season – rookie Hunter Miska is 5-0-0 in six starts for the Tucson Roadrunners.

Nedeljkovic, in his second season as a pro, is the only Checkers goalie to start the season with seven consecutive wins for the team (Tom McCollum won his first six starts as a Checkers after winning his lone game with Stockton, putting him at 7-0-0 as well), while his seven-game winning streak is the longest in franchise history.

MILLER TIME

With a strong push recently, Andrew Miller has moved to within one point of the team scoring lead held by Lucas Wallmark, who has missed the last two games due to injury. The veteran forward has logged 14 points in as many games this season, tying him for 16th in the AHL, and has only been held off the scoresheet in three games, none of which came consecutively.

Miller, whose strong finish a season ago was a big part of the Checkers’ road to the playoffs, hasn’t missed a beat, logging 46 points in his last 48 games dating back to last season. Since Jan. 27 of last season, when he returned from injury, only two players have scored more in the regular season than Miller’s 46 points – Chris Bourque with 47 and Chris Terry with 51.

Ranks

  • Lucas Wallmark is tied for eighth in the league in scoring
  • Valentin Zykov is tied fifth in the AHL in goals
  • Warren Foegele is tied for the league lead in shorthanded goals and points, is tied for third among league rookies in goals and is tied for second among league rookies in game-winning goals
  • Alex Nedeljkovic ranks 10th in the AHL in goals-against average and is tied for second in wins

INJURIES

  • Brenden Kichton missed 5 games starting Nov. 3
  • Jake Chelios missed 5 games starting Nov. 3
  • Lucas Wallmark missed two games starting Nov. 10

Transactions

Incoming

  • Nov. 9: (D) Roland McKeown assigned to Charlotte (AHL)
  • Nov. 12: (C) Patrick Brown assigned to Charlotte (AHL)

Outgoing

  • Nov. 11: (D) Josiah Didier assigned to Florida (ECHL)
  • Nov. 12: (RW) Lee Stempniak recalled by Carolina (NHL)
  • Nov. 12: (LW) Phil Di Giuseppe recalled by Carolina (NHL)

Coming Up

Wednesday, November 15 at 10:30 am - Checkers at Springfield

Friday, November 17 at 7 pm - Checkers at Springfield

Saturday, November 18 at 7 pm - Checkers at Bridgeport

By the Numbers

CATEGORY RECORD AHL RANK LAST WEEK
Power play 20.0% 7th 14th
Penalty kill 83.8% 13th 14th
Goals per game 4.0 2nd 2nd
Shots per game 29.07 21st 17th
Goals allowed per game 2.93 t-12th 15th
Shots allowed per game 30.57 21st t-17th
Penalty minutes per game 13.79 10th 9th


CATEGORY LEADER(S)
Points Lucas Wallmark (15), Andrew Miller (14), Valentin Zykov (13)
Goals Valentin Zykov (8), Warren Foegele (7), Andrew Poturalski, Andrew Miller (5)
Assists Lucas Wallmark (11), Andrew Miller (9), Trevor Carrick, Sergey Tolchinsky (6)
Power play goals Valentin Zykov (4), Nick Schilkey, Andrew Poturalski (2)
Shorthanded goals Warren Foegele (2), Nicolas Roy (1)
Game-winning goals Warren Foegele, Valentin Zykov, Andrew Poturalski (2)
Shots on goal Trevor Carrick, Warren Foegele, Lucas Wallmark (28)
Penalty minutes Trevor Carrick, Patrick Brown (25), Zack Stortini (23)
Plus/minus Philip Samuelsson, Trevor Carrick (+8), Lucas Wallmark (+7)
Wins Alex Nedeljkovic (7)
Goals-against average Alex Nedeljkovic (2.30)
Save percentage Alex Nedeljkovic (.917)
Nicholas Niedzielski
Author: Nicholas NiedzielskiEmail: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
Director of Communications Nicholas Niedzielski joined the Checkers in the summer of 2014. A Texas native, he previously worked for the AHL's Texas Stars.

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