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GAME PREVIEW: RUSH vs MALLARDS 2/15/14

Saturday, February 15th
GAME PREVIEW: RUSH vs MALLARDS 2/15/14

Where We Left Off: Duck Hunted – Last night, the Rush and the Quad City Mallards played for the first time since 2013 in the iWireless Center. The Rush carried a four-game losing streak into the contest and put a solid effort together, but once again came up short. Gergo Nagy got the Mallards on the board first, deflecting a shot from Matt Boyd past Tim Boron, giving the Mallards an early 1-0 lead. 46 seconds later though, the Rush would even things back up, as Bobby Preece would unload a rocket from the point, scoring his second goal of the season to make it a 1-1 game. Nagy would once again hit the scoresheet, rifling a top-shelf wrister over Boron’s glove to hand the Mallards back a 2-1 lead after 20 minutes. Jared Brown would get things started for the Rush in the second period, scoring roughly four minutes into the frame on a wrist shot that was deflected by the Quad City defense, tying the game back up at 2-2. Scoring the first power play goal in the series was former Rush forward Jeff Lee, who banged home a rebound in front of Boron to once again give his team a 3-2 lead in this back and forth affair. The Rush, after a plethora of chances in the period, would be unable to even things up, and Justin Fox would score an insurance goal with 2:59 left in the game, securing his team’s 4-2 win over the Rush.

Tough Times – The Rush are in the midst of a five-game losing streak, the longest they have faced all season long. Losing streaks longer than two games are a rarity for the Rush, as this is their second time with a streak longer than a pair of dropped games (the previous losing streak was three games this year). Historically, losing streaks of longer than three games are a rarity for the Rush in general, as the Boys From the Black Hills have not lost more than three consecutive games since the 2010/2011 season where they made a conference finals appearance, losing five straight then as well. Ironically enough, to end that skid the Rush defeated the Quad City Mallards by a 3-2 score.

Sure You’re Wearing the Right Jersey? – Last night, former players were in full force, scoring three of the six goals in the evening. Former Mallards Bobby Preece and Jared Brown tied the game up for the Rush twice, while Jeff Lee, who spent his rookie season with the Rush, scored the go-ahead power play goal for Quad City late in the second period.

3 at 2 – With their fifth straight loss last night, a Denver Cutthroats win, and an Allen Americans loss, there is now a three-way tie for second place in the CHL between the Rush, Cutthroats, and Americans. It is a true three-way tie, as each team has played 46 games and registered 56 points. Should Allen fall again to the Mavericks tonight, the Cutthroats lose, and the Rush lose as well, there will then be a four-way tie for second, as the Mallards will secure 56 points with four games in hand on each team.

Lots of Made From Scratch Biscuits – In their last nine games, the Rush have registered 324 shots on goal, an average of exactly 36 shots a game, including two 40+ shot performances. Despite the high offensive output, the Rush have lost eight of those last nine, scoring 20 goals, an average of 2.22 goals per game in that stretch.

CRUNCHING NUMBERS: vs the Mallards – Tonight is the last time both teams will meet up until March. Let’s look at some numbers from last night, and the series as a whole through four games:

· 1 – the number of power play goals scored in this series by either club. The Mallards finally broke the goose egg (no pun intended…ok pun intended) as far as specialty unit goals are concerned, as former Rush forward Jeff Lee scored the first power play goal in this series. After last night’s game, both teams are a combined 1/19, a whopping 5.26% in this head-to-head matchup.

· 4 – the number of points registered by the Mallards’ Gergo Nagy and Gabriel Levesque in this series. Last night, both gentlemen combined for three points, as Nagy gave the Flock their first two leads of the game.

Other Notable Performances: These players have been lighting up the stat sheet recently:

· Jesse Schultz – ten points (2 G, 8 A) in his last ten games

· Winston Day Chief – four assists in his last four games

· Jared Brown – three goals in his last four games

· Eric Giosa – three assists in his last four games

· Scott Brannon – three points (G, 2 A) in his last five games

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