BARONS GAME NOTES - DECEMBER 14
By Jim Byers,
San Antonio Rampage (10-12-0-3) at Oklahoma City Barons (11-9-1-2)
Barons Game 24 | Home Game 12 | AHL Game 362
Dec. 14, 2012, 7:00 pm CST | Cox Convention Center, Oklahoma City, OK
TONIGHT: The Barons meet the San Antonio Rampage (Florida Panthers) in the first of back-to-back games at the Cox Center. The rematch is tomorrow at 7 pm CST. San Antonio has won 3 straight head-to-head meetings with the Barons, most recently 3-2 on Sunday at AT&T Center. The Barons took the opener of the 12-game season series 5-2 on Oct. 19. OKC has lost 4 in a row and is winless in its last 5 at 0-4-0-1. The Barons are 4th in the South Division with 25 points, 2 ahead of San Antonio. OKC is tied for 10th and San Antonio is tied for 12th in the conference.
WINS AND LOSSES: The Barons enter tonight’s game 5 points back of the leader, Charlotte, in the South Division (with 2 games in hand) and 9 points behind Abbotsford in the Western Conference. Twelve of the 15 Western Conference teams boast a standing point percentage of .500 or better. OKC has lost a season-high 4 straight in regulation, all one-goal finals, or in the case of Tuesday’s 4-2 setback vs. Peoria one goal plus an empty-netter. The 4-game losing streak matches the longest in club history, achieved once in each of the previous 2 seasons (per AHL statistical rules, only regulation and overtime losses count toward losing streaks. Shootout losses are “non-wins” and count only toward winless streaks). The Barons’ 5-game winless drought, starting with a shootout loss Nov. 29 at Houston, is also a season high and follows an 8-game stretch (Nov. 10-Nov. 29) where they secured at least 1 standing point in each game. The club record for longest winless streak is 6, from Dec. 12-29, 2010.
NO RESPITE FROM TEXAS: OKC is in a stretch where 13 of 14 games are against teams based in Texas, spanning Nov. 29-Jan. 1. The only break was Tuesday’s home contest against Peoria. Thirty-six of OKC’s 76 games are against Texas-based teams. The Barons are a combined 4-5-0-2 against Texas teams, 3-1-0-1 at home. The Barons are in the midst of a stretch where 4 out of 5 games are against the Rampage.
POINT LEADERS: OKC has the AHL’s top two point scorers in Justin Schultz and Jordan Eberle. Schultz leads the AHL with 34 points, on 11 goals and a league-leading 23 assists. Schultz has collected multiple points in 12 of 23 games played, including 9 contests with 2 assists. Schultz is almost halfway to the AHL rookie record for assists by a defenseman, 47, by Mike Gaul of Hershey in 1997-98. Schultz has at least 1 point in 20 of 23 Barons games and was held off the scoresheet on Sunday against San Antonio for just the third time this season, and the first time when OKC wasn’t shut out. Jordan Eberle is second in the AHL with 30 points, 14 goals and 16 assists. Eberle is second in the AHL in goals with 14, one behind Syracuse’s Tyler Johnson.
EBERLE, SCHULTZ RECOGNIZED: Jordan Eberle is the CCM/AHL Player of the Month for November, marking the second straight month a Baron has won that award. Justin Schultz took home the honor for October. Last month, Eberle led all November scorers with 10 goals, 21 points and a +13 rating in 13 games, including 7 multi-point games. Schultz is the CCM/AHL Rookie of the Month for November. He maintained his scoring lead last month with 5 goals, 14 assists and a +10 rating in 13 games.
MORE SCHULTZ: Justin Schultz saw a franchise record-equaling 10-game point streak snapped in the 3-2 defeat on Sunday at San Antonio, but rebounded with 2 assists in Tuesday’s game. Schultz’s 10-game streak remains the second-longest in the AHL this season behind a 12-gamer for Syracuse’s Richard Panik. Schultz, who had a 9-game point streak to begin the season, matches Alex Giroux (Feb. 27-Apr. 8, 2011) and Josh Green (Dec. 27, 2011-Feb. 11, 2012) for the all-time club mark.
OPPOSITES ATTRACT: The Barons are No. 1 in overall power play percentage at 23.2, collecting 23 goals in 99 opportunities. They’re also on top in home power play rate at 37.2 (16-for-43). OKC is No. 30 in overall penalty killing at 78.1 despite denying 44 of their last 51 times short spanning 12 games (86.3). OKC is last in home penalty kill percentage at 74.4, allowing 11 power play goals in 43 times short.
Last 5 Games:
Date Opp. Result OKC Goalie (GA,SV) Opp. Goalie Attn.
Nov. 29 @ Hou SOL, 1-2 Danis (1, 32) Hackett (1, 23) 3,505
Nov. 30 @ Hou L, 3-4 Roy (4, 23) Hackett (3, 24) 8,755
Dec. 8 @ SA L, 3-4 Danis (4, 28) Markstrom (3, 26) 6,167
Dec. 9 @ SA L, 2-3 Danis (3, 27) Markstrom (2, 36) 8,435
Dec. 11 Peo L, 2-4 Roy (3, EN, 30) Allen (2, 26) 2,580
Next 5 games (all times Central):
Date Opp. Site Time Broadcast
Dec. 15 San Antonio Cox Center 7:00 KXY 96.1 FM
Dec. 16 Houston Toyota Center 5:05 KTOK AM 1000
Dec. 21 Texas Cox Center 7:00 KXY 96.1 FM
Dec. 22 Texas Cox Center 7:00 KXY 96.1 FM
Dec. 27 Texas Cedar Park Center 7:30 KXY 96.1 FM
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