The Rapid City Rush head to Fort Wayne to play a three-in-three series as they continue to fight for a playoff spot. The last time the Rush and Komets saw each other was in the 2018-19 season when the Rush traveled to Fort Wayne for a one-game series. The Rush won 2-1 in a shootout, but through ten games against the Komets, the Rush are 3-6-1-0. The Komets are currently sitting in fourth place in the Central Division and fifth in the Western Conference with a record of 30-24-4-2 for 66 points and a win percentage of 0.550. The Rush are currently sixth in the Mountain Division and tenth in the Western Conference with a record of 29-30-1-0 for 59 points and a win percentage of 0.492. Both teams have played 60 games and have 12 games left in the season.
The Fort Wayne Komets come into this weekend with a record of 5-5-0-0 in their last ten games, but they have a record of 12-10-4-2 at home this season. They are 13-9-0-1 when scoring first and 22-0-1-0 when leading after two periods of play. The Komets are currently on a two-game losing streak and lead the league in penalty minutes with 1,167 penalty minutes for an average of 19.45 penalty minutes per game. Special teams have been a strength for the Komets this season, as their powerplay is sixth in the league at 22.5%, and their home powerplay is seventh in the league at 23.5%. Their penalty kill is fourth in the league at 83.6%, and their home penalty kill is 13th at 80.8%. The Komets lead the league with an average of 37.38 shots for per game and are 16th in the league with an average of 32.42 shots against per game. The Komets are third in the league with an average of 3.77 goals for per game, but they are 25th in the league with an average of 3.82 goals against per game.
The Rapid City Rush comes into this weekend 6-4-0-0 in their last ten and on a five-game winning streak. The Rush are 22-10-1-0 when scoring first but are 10-19-2-0 on the road. They are 20-2-1-0 when leading after the second and 14th in the league with 787 penalty minutes and an average of 13.12 penalty minutes per game. It is no big secret that special teams have struggled this season for the Rush, which shows in their special teams stats. Their powerplay is last in the league at 15.3%, but their road powerplay is 26th at 13.1%. Their penalty kill is also last in the league at 74.9%, but their road penalty kill is tied for 23rd in the league, with the Orlando Solar Bears, at 74.4%. The Rush are fifth in the league with 35.20 shots per game, and they are 20th with an average of 33.30 shots against per game. The Rush are also 11th in the league with an average of 3.37 goals for per game, and they are 23rd in the league with an average of 3.73 goals against per game.
Player Streaks and Notable Mentions
The Komets come into this weekend without any players on active overall streaks. Forward Tye Felhaber is third in the league for assists with 49 assists. He is also on a six-game assist streak at home, with 13 assists. Some good news for the Rush is that he is now up in the AHL with the Milwaukee Admirals.
The Rush comes into this weekend with four players on different streaks. Zach Court is currently on a two-game goal streak with two goals and a two-game point streak with two goals and two assists for four points. Matt Marcinew is on a three-game point streak with two goals and two assists for four points. Currently, Marcinew will not be playing as he is now on reserve. Blake Bennett is also on a three-game point streak with one goal and two assists for three points. Goaltender Adam Carlson is on a five-game win streak, while goaltender Daniil Chechelev broke his five-game losing streak in his last appearance.
There are not very many milestones that could be hit for the Rush this weekend, but there are a couple of players that could set career-season highs in points. Alex Aleardi currently sits at 54 points this season. The most points he has had in any ECHL season before this was 59. Aleardi has played in all 60 games for the Rush this season. Aleardi still sits at 98 ECHL penalty minutes and could hit 100 this weekend.
Jimmy Soper currently has 38 points this season, and his single-season career-high is 43. On January 23, 2023, Soper was traded from the Tulsa Oilers to the Norfolk Admirals. Then on February 5, 2023, Soper was traded to the Rush from the Norfolk Admirals. He did not play any games with the Norfolk Admirals. Soper did play in 36 games with the Tulsa Oilers this season, where he had 16 goals and 12 assists for 28 points. Through 16 games with the Rush, Soper has three goals and seven assists for ten points.
One thought on “ECHL: Rapid City Rush Look to Continue Their Fight for a Playoff Spot”
Great info and the stats can sometimes be depressing when you read them, but in all honesty, the season is long and you can’t be number one in everything. Things happen in the rink and sometimes the better team doesn’t always pull a win. And on a side note, let’s give Aleardi a break on his penalty minutes. We all know it has to do with defending his teammates and some incidental minor hockey calls. Just saying!!