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GAME NOTES: March 29 - Allen Americans at Rapid City Rush

Friday, March 29th
GAME NOTES: March 29 - Allen Americans at Rapid City Rush

(RAPID CITY, S.D.) - The Rapid City Rush, proud affiliate of the NHL's Calgary Flames, take the ice against the Allen Americans tonight with only eight games left in the regular season. 

The Rush are the second-hottest team in the Mountain Division at 6-3-1 in their last 10. Allen is only 2-8-0 in their last ten, but holds a slim two-point marging over the Rush in the standings. 

 

WATCH     |     LISTEN

 

THINGS GETTING TOASTY AS MOUNTAIN DIVISION RACE HEATS UP

The Rush are now just six points out of the playoffs and find themselves in the sixth spot in the Mountain Division for the first time since February 22. Rapid City defeated Allen on Wednesday night to even the season series at two games apiece and will now duel for position inside the division standings. The Americans are only two points clear of the Rush for fifth place, and trying to hang on to their own playoff hopes. A win in tonight’s contest would force a winner-take-all showdown for fifth place on Saturday night.

 

PROPP BET

Rookie goaltender Christian Propp has become the first Rush goaltender since Jason Pawloski to win in his first two starts of the season. Propp stopped 25 of 26 in Sunday’s triumph over Utah and turned aside 27 of 29 in Wednesday’s win over Allen. Propp has also logged an assist in each of those two games to lead all Rush goalies in points. Propp tallied a .924 save percentage in college at Wilfrid Laurier University and helped lead the Golden Hawks to their first Queen’s Cup Playoff series win in over 10 years.

 

DU YOU BELIEVE?

Rookie forward Mark Duarte matched his single-game career high with four points on Wednesday. Duarte has scored twice in three of the last four games he’s played for the Rush and logged a four-point night in a 9-5 drubbing of Fort Wayne on January 13. Duarte’s surge comes after a long stint with the AHL’s Calgary Wranglers, where he’s played 15 games this season as an AHL-contracted prospect.

 

RIED-ING MOMENTUM

AHL-prospect Will Riedell has points in four of his last six games for the Rush. The Greensboro, N.C.-native had a goal, assist, and a plus-3 rating in Wednesday’s win. The plus-3 rating is Riedell’s single-game career high since joining the professional ranks last season. 

 

SPECIAL TEAMS SHOWCASE

The Rush had seven powerplay chances in Wednesday’s game and converted on their first. It’s the second-most chances the Rush have had in a game this season since going 1-for-8 on the powerplay in a 5-2 loss to Idaho on January 19. The Rush are 14-14-0 this season when scoring a powerplay goal, but 4-1-0 when scoring two-or-more goals on the Powerade powerplay. Allen is the second-most penalized team in the league this season behind Norfolk. 

 

SPREADING THE WEALTH

In their last five games now, the Rush have utilized points from 15 different scorers. The spreading of points has been a trademark of this Rush team since the start of the season. While Alex Aleardi leads the way in points, and Blake Bennett is the only 30-goal-scorer to this point, every active skater for the Rush has scored at least a point this season, and the team has produced 19 double-digit point-getters this season. Over 40 percent of Rush goals this season have come from rookies.

 

WHAT DOES IT TAKE?

In order to pass Allen this weekend, the Rush need to win both games in regulation. An overtime loss and a regulation win or two overtime wins would tie the Rush with the Americans in the standings. Rapid City’s elimination number remains at 10 for the time being while Allen’s elimination number is 14. 

 

FOR THE SERIES

Whoever wins tonight’s game will clinch at least a share of the season series. The Rush have already clinched a share of the season series against Wichita and wrapped up 4-4-1 against Utah this season. The Rush have won 16 total divisional games, but went 10-7-0 against non-divisional opponents. Outside of South Division play, Rapid City was 9-2-0 against the North and Central Division. 

 

3… IT’S A MAGIC NUMBER

The Rush have potted at least three goals in each of their last nine outings, the longest streak of three-plus goal scoring this season. In the streak of nine games, the Rush are 6-2-1 in those nine games, and are the second-hottest team in the division behind Kansas City entering tonight’s game.

 

THE ELIMINATION NUMBER (E#)

The Rush elimination number is now 10 points. 

 

If that number is above zero after the end of the regular season, the Rush will make the playoffs.

The number decreases by TWO every time Utah wins in regulation or the Rush lose in regulation. The number decreases by ONE every time the Rush or Utah lose in overtime/shootout. And the number stays the same with the Rush win in regulation or Utah loses in regulation. 

If the number hits zero, the Rush are eliminated from playoff contention. 

 

ROOTING GUIDE

For the Rush to get the most out of the results tonight, here’s who Rush fans should be pulling for in tonight’s games

 

Who to pull for                  Against                   Help                       

THE RUSH                           Allen                      WIN

Idaho                                   Utah                       Utah up 6*

Tulsa/Wichita                      No overtime           TUL up 8 / WIC down 1

 

*The Rush have one game-in-hand over Utah

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