The Rapid City Rush head to Texas this weekend to take on the Allen Americans. The Rush currently sit sixth in the Mountain Division, tied with the Grizzlies for 49 points. Through 52 games, they are 24-27-1-0 with a win percentage of 0.471. In their past ten games, the Rush are 4-6-0-0 with a one-game losing streak after losing their last game out in Tulsa. Meanwhile, the Allen Americans sit fourth in the Mountain Division, in the last playoff spot, with 53 points. Through 52 games, they are 26-25-1-0 with a win percentage of 0.510. In their past ten games, the Americans are 6-4-0-0 with a two-game winning streak after winning their last two games against the Utah Grizzlies.
Last Time in Texas
The Rush have only seen Allen three times this season, where the Rush took all six points and swept the series at the beginning of December. They won all three games in regulation, 6-5, 8-2, and 3-2. Through the three games, the Rush had 11 different goal scorers, ranging from one to four goals; 15 different players with assists, ranging from one to five; and 16 different players with points, ranging from one to seven. Logan Nelson led the Rush against Allen with four goals through the three games. Matt Marcinew led the Rush against Allen with five assists. Marcinew led the Rush against Allen with seven points in the three games. Almost the whole Rush roster was getting points last time around; some of those key players will not be playing this weekend. Simon Lavigne is no longer with the Rush, while Jon Martin, Kenton Helgesen, Rory Kerins, and Ilya Nikolaev are out injured.
Allen had six different goal scorers, ranging from one to two; nine different players with assists, ranging from one to three; and ten players with points, ranging from one to four. Jack Combs, Aidan Brown, and Hank Crone lead Allen against the Rush with two goals. Crone and Brown had two assists. Colton Hargrove and Jackson Leppard lead Allen against the Rush with three assists. Hargrove, Brown, and Crone lead Allen against the Rush with four points through three games. The Americans are also missing a few key guys, as Leppard is now with the South Carolina Stingrays, and Zach Pochiro is now with the Kansas City Mavericks.
Through the three games, five different goalies played between the two teams. The Rush had Adam Carlson and Daniil Chechelev, who is currently in the AHL with the Calgary Wranglers. The Americans had Eric Dop, who is now with the Wichita Thunder; Logan Flodell, who is currently in the AHL with the Belleville Senators; and Luke Peressini. Adam Carlson played 60 minutes, in one game, with 25 saves on 27 shots for a save percentage of 0.926. Daniil Chechelev played 119:44, in two games, with 53 saves on 60 shots for a save percentage of 0.883. Eric Dop played 16:30, in relief of Luke Peressini, with 11 saves on 14 shots for a save percentage of 0.786. Luke Peressini played 43:13, in one game, with 30 saves on 35 shots with a save percentage of 0.857. Logan Flodell played 118:04, in two games, with 68 saves on 77 shots for a save percentage of 0.883.
Players to Watch
The Rush had Allen’s number the last time they met, but both teams are different than the last time they met. The Rush currently has two players on goal streaks, two players on assist streaks, four players on point streaks, and one goalie on a win streak. Alex Aleardi is on a three-game goal streak with three goals, and Matt Marcinew is on a two-game goal streak with two goals. Keanu Yamamoto and Tyson Helgesen are both on three-game assist streaks, both with three assists during that time. Aleardi and Matt Marcinew are on three-game point streaks, both with four points during that time. Yamamoto is on a three-game point streak with six points, and Tyson Helgesen is on a three-game point streak with three points. Adam Carlson is currently on a two-game win streak.
Meanwhile, Allen has two players on goal streaks, four on assist streaks, and seven on point streaks. Hargrove is on a three-game point streak with three goals and four assists for seven points. Colton Hargrove is on a three-game goal streak with three goals, and Hank Crone is on a six-game goal streak with eight goals. Stefan Fournier, Hank Crone, and Grant Hebert are all on two-game assist streaks with two assists during that time. Jack Combs is on a six-game assist streak with seven assists during that time. Liam Finlay is on a six-game point streak with three goals and eight assists for 11 points. Mikael Robidoux, Stefan Fournier, and Grant Hebert are all on two-game point streaks with one goal and two assists for three points each. Hank Crone is on a six-game point streak with eight goals and four assists for 12 points. Jack Combs is currently on a 17-game point streak with ten goals and 19 assists for 29 points. Neither Peressini nor Chase Perry are on win streaks but have both won their last start.
What to Expect
As previously mentioned, both teams have had many roster changes since they last saw each other. Both teams need the points this weekend to help them in the playoff chase. So, these games could be very close or blowouts, depending on which team show up and wants to win more. Defense and goaltending will be big in this series as both teams have good goal scorers, and Allen has the top three goal scorers in the league and four of the top ten goal scorers in the league. Allen will most likely come into this series looking for revenge, so it could become a pretty physical two games as well. One thing to remember is that the Rush does tend to play better when they play a more physical game. As long as the Rush sticks to playing their way, they can win.