Reign Prepare for Texas-Sized Showdown vs Stars

Feb 22, 2016

The Week That Was…

The Ontario Reign took on the Stockton Heat, Texas Stars and San Diego Gulls this week for a week record of 2-1-0-0 to hold the first-place position in the Pacific Division and reclaim the top spot in the Western Conference with an overall record of 30-14-3-1.

The Reign and Heat met at Citizens Business Bank Arena in Ontario on Wednesday to close a home-and-home series. Forward Andrew Crescenzi scored a goal and two assists and line mates Jordan Samuels-Thomas and Valentin Zykov each hit the back of the net as the Reign cruised to a 6-1 victory, snapping a rare three-game losing streak. Reign leading-point producer Sean Backman also contributed with two goals.

The winning momentum carried into Friday’s tilt against the Stars as Samuels-Thomas and Crescenzi again lit the goal lamp and team captain Vincent LoVerde buried the game-winning goal in the third period in a 4-1 triumph. The win snapped the Stars’ six-game winning streak.

The Gulls tracked down the Reign on Saturday as Ontario kicked off a five-game road trip. Defensemen Kevin Raine and Nick Ebert would grab goals, but the Gulls slipped three shots past netminder Peter Budaj and potted an empty-net marker en route to a 4-2 win.

The Numbers

  • Record: 30-14-3-1 (1st Place, Pacific Division, 1st in Western Conference)
  • Home: 19-6-2-1
  • Away: 11-8-1-0
  • Last 10 Games: 6-4-0-0
  • Streak: 0-1-0-0
  • Goals: Michael Mersch* (19)
  • Assists: Nic Dowd (27)
  • Points: Sean Backman (38)
  • Penalty Minutes: Kurtis MacDermid (91)
  • Power-Play Goals: Sean Backman, Michael Mersch* (5)
  • Power-Play Assists: Nic Dowd (10)
  • Power-Play Points: Sean Backman (14)
  • Shorthanded Goals: Andrew Crescenzi (2)
  • Shorthanded Assists: Four players with one assist
  • Shorthanded Points: Sean Backman, Jordan Samuels-Thomas, Andrew Crescenzi (2)
  • Game-Winning Goals: Sean Backman, Michael Mersch* (5)
  • Wins: Peter Budaj (28)                        
  • GAA: Peter Budaj (1.58)                  
  • SPCT: Peter Budaj (.935)

*Mersch is currently recalled to the Los Angeles Kings (NHL)

League Leaders:

  • Forward Sean Backman is first in the AHL with 166 shots and forward Michael Mersch is second with 149 shots.
  • Goaltender Peter Budaj leads the league with a 1.58 goals-against average (GAA), eight shutouts, 28 wins and 2464 minutes played and a .935 save percentage. Budaj is fifth in the AHL with 929 saves.
  • Defenseman Kurtis MacDermid is fifth among rookies with 91 penalty minutes and fourth with 23 minor penalties.
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