BARONS GAME NOTES - MARCH 4
By Jim Byers,
Oklahoma City Barons (26-21-2-5) at Charlotte Checkers (33-18-2-3)
Barons Game 55 | Road Game 27 | AHL Game 839
TONIGHT: The Barons wrap up back-to-back games against the Charlotte Checkers (Carolina Hurricanes) at Time Warner Cable Arena. This is the end of a 3-in-3 stretch for OKC, which began on Saturday at Texas with a 5-4 shootout win. With Charlotte’s 3-2 win last night, OKC is 3-3-1-0 against the Checkers, with a 2-1-0-0 mark at Charlotte. This is the last of 8 regular-season meetings between these teams. The Barons have 59 points, 10th in the Western Conference. Charlotte has 71 points and is second in the South Division behind conference-leader Texas (75 points).
OFF THE TOP: The Barons saw a 2-game winning streak snapped last night, but have won 3 out of 5 and have gained at least 1 standing point in 10 of the last 15 games, going 8-5-0-2 in that time. February was OKC’s third-winningest month this season with a 5-2-0-1 slate, a win total surpassed only by 7 victories in November and 6 in December. Yesterday was the Barons’ first game outside Oklahoma or Texas since Jan. 26 at Rockford, a 4-3 win. This is finale of a 3-in-3 set for the Barons. OKC has 3 losses and a shootout defeat in the last game of a 3-in-3 this season, with 3 of those 4 finales on the road. OKC faces a 3-in-3 next weekend, hosting Rockford on Friday and Saturday before spending Sunday, the first day of Daylight Savings Time, at San Antonio. The Barons are No. 1 in the AHL on the power play at 22.4 percent. The power play is 13-for-83 (15.7%) since Jordan Eberle, Justin Schultz and Taylor Hall returned to the NHL.
OKC VS. CHARLOTTE: The Barons are 3-3-0-1 against the Checkers this season and 6-7-1-1 combined in the 2 seasons the teams have met. All-time, OKC is 4-2-0-1 at Time Warner Cable Arena. The Barons have achieved their season-high of 7 goals twice against the Checkers this season, accounting for 2 of the 3 times that has occurred. OKC owns a 7-2 win (Nov. 25) and a 7-3 decision (Feb. 1) in the most recent game between the teams. The Checkers have a 7-goal performance against the Barons, 7-0 on Jan. 11 at the Cox Center. Charlotte is 11-for-31 on the power play against OKC this season. The Checkers have scored 2 power play goals per game in each of the past 5 head-to-head meetings with OKC, going 10-for-25 against the Barons in that span.
CHEECHOO CHARGES: Jonathan Cheechoo has 6 multiple point games in 14 contests since being signed to a PTO in January. Cheechoo is tied for the AHL lead in points (18, on 8 goals and 10 assists) dating to his first game in the league this season on Jan. 23. Cheechoo had 2 goals and an assist on Friday in a 5-4 shootout win at Texas. He is tied for 9th on the Barons in scoring (with Toni Rajala) among all players who have appeared for the team this season.
STRETCH TIME: C.J. Stretch signed a PTO with the Barons on Tuesday and provided the eventual game-winning goal in the third period of Tuesday’s 3-2 win over Texas. It was his first AHL goal in his 24th game in the league, as he appeared in 23 games for Houston last season. Stretch’s 60 ECHL points this season for the Ontario Reign, on 27 goals and 33 assists, were the fourth-most in the league at the time of his promotion. Stretch is the third Baron this season to tally his first career AHL goal in his first league game, joining Taylor Hall (Nov. 2 vs. Houston) and Toni Rajala (Nov. 21 at Texas).
ODDS AND ENDS: Brett Clark has points in 5 straight, collecting 1 goal and 5 assists during the streak...Clark is also +5 in his last 5 contests...the Barons are 11-5-0-1 when they’re perfect on the penalty kill...6 of OKC’s top 7 point scorers for the season are currently playing for the Edmonton Oilers...despite not playing an AHL game since Jan. 5, Jordan Eberle remains tied for fourth in the league with 51 points and is fifth in goals with 25...Justin Schultz, another who has not played for the Barons since Jan. 5, is tied for 9th in the AHL with 48 points and leads all defensemen and rookies in points...tonight’s game is the third time this season OKC has participated in the only game in the AHL on a given night...twice they visited Houston (Nov. 29 and Jan. 1) while having the AHL schedule to themselves...this is the last time during the regular season OKC takes part in the only game in the league.
Last 5 Games:
Date Opp. Result OKC Goalie (GA,SV) Opp. Goalie Attn.
Feb. 22 Hou W, 4-3 Danis (3, 23) Hackett (4, 26) 3,746
Feb. 23 @ Hou L, 1-2 Danis (2, 21) Hackett (1, 36) 12,367
Feb. 26 Tex W, 3-2 Danis (2, 21) Campbell (3, 22) 2,400
March 2 @ Tex SOW, 5-4 Hovinen (4, 22) Nilstorp (4, 25) 5,789
March 3 @ Cha L, 2-3 Roy (3, 17) Peters (2, 33) 5,543
Next 5 games (all times Central):
Date Opp. Site Time Broadcast
March 8 Rockford Cox Center 7:00 KXY 96.1 FM
March 9 Rockford Cox Center 7:00 KXY 96.1 FM
March 10 San Antonio AT&T Center 4:30 KXY 96.1 FM
March 13 San Antonio AT&T Center 7:00 KXY 96.1 FM
March 19 Rochester Cox Center 7:00 KXY 96.1 FM
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