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Syracuse Crunch at Rochester Americans game preview 11-01-2023

The Syracuse Crunch and Rochester Americans will meet for the first time this season on Wednesday night in Rochester.

The Syracuse Crunch travel to Rochester on Wednesday for a mid-week North Division matchup against the Americans at the Blue Cross Arena. It will be the first of twelve games between the teams this regular season.

Both the Crunch and Americans are off to great starts this season. Syracuse has won four of its first six games, while Rochester has built an early record of 5-1-1. The Americans are in first place in the North Division, and the Crunch are in third.

The Crunch

The Crunch have found success under new coach Joel Bouchard by playing a well-balanced game. They are in the top ten league-wide in goals per game, goals allowed per game, power-play, and penalty kill. They have also received excellent goaltending from Hugo Alnefelt and Pyotr Kochetkov – who in his second stint on loan from the Carolina Hurricanes.

Kochetkov shut out the Laval Rocket 5-0 in Syracuse’s last game on Saturday night.

With last season’s leading scorer Alex Barré Boulet in Tampa Bay with the Lightning this season, some wondered how they would replace his offensive output. Felix Robert has certainly stepped up to help fill the void. Known as “Bob” amongst Crunch fans, Robert leads the team in scoring with eight points and has registered at least one point in each of Syracuse’s six games thus far.

Syracuse Crunch owner Howard Dolgon featured on the Central New York Hockey Report

The Americans

The Rochester Americans have found success by playing the opposite of a well-balanced game. They have become the epitome of the “fire wagon” style of hockey that was popular back in the 1980s. The Americans boast the best offense in the AHL on a goals-per-game basis but have had tremendous problems keeping the puck out of their own net. They are third worst league-wide in that category but nonetheless have still won five of their first seven games.

Part of the reason for the Amerk’s offensive success is their ability to drive play from the blue line. Defensemen Jeremy Davies and Kale Clague are two points off of the team lead with seven points each. Davies also leads the team in shots with twenty-seven.

In their last game, played last Saturday night, the Americans defeated the Utica Comets 5-4 in Utica.

Both teams are undefeated when they score first (Syracuse is 4-0-0, Rochester is 3-0-0), whether that will hold up on Wednesday night remains to be seen. Here’s the tale of the tape between the Syracuse Crunch and Rochester Americans.

Team Records

Syracuse

  • Overall Record: 4-2-0-0, 8 Pts.
  • Away Record: 2-1-0-0, 4 Pts.
  • Place in the Standings: 3rd in the North Division.
  • Goal Differential: +9.
  • Head Coach: Joel Bouchard.

Rochester

  • Overall Record: 5-1-1, 11 Pts.
  • Home Record: 2-0-1-0, 5 Pts.
  • Place in the Standings: 1st in the North Division.
  • Goal Differential: +2.
  • Head Coach: Seth Appert.

Team Offense

Syracuse

  • Goals For: 22.
  • Goals Per Game: 3.67 – 9th in the AHL.
  • Shots: 190.
  • Shots Per Game: 31.67 – 11th in the AHL.
  • Power Play: 26.7% (8 for 30) – 5th in the AHL.

Rochester

  • Goals For: 33.
  • Goals Per Game: 4.71 – 1st in the AHL.
  • Shots: 228.
  • Shots Per Game: 32.57 – 8th in the AHL.
  • Power Play: 32.0% (8 for 25) – 2nd in the AHL.

Top Five Scorers + Individual Leaders

Syracuse

  • 1.) Felix Robert: 5G + 3A = 8 Pts. Robert is 10th in the AHL in goals and 17th in +/-.
  • 2.) Mitchell Chaffee: 1G + 6A = 7 Pts. Chaffee is 15th in the AHL in assists.
  • 3.) Gage Goncalves: 0G + 5A = 5 Pts.
  • 4/5.) Daniel Walcott (3G + 1A), Lucas Edmonds (2G + 2A), Gabriel Dumont (1G + 3A), Jack Thompson (1G + 3A) = 4 Pts each.
  • Shots Leader: Felix Robert with 19.
  • Power Play Points Leaders: Mitchell Chaffee and Jack Thompson with 4 each.
  • Power Play Goals Leaders 8 tied with 1 each.
  • Shorthanded Goals Leader; Daniel Walcott with 1.
  • Game Winning Goals Leader: 4 tied with 1 each.
  • +/- Leader: Felix Robert at +5.
  • PIM Leader: Shawn Element with 26. Element in 14th in the AHL in PIM.

Rochester

  • 1.) Jiri Kulich: 6G + 3A = 9 Pts. Kulich is 4th in the AHL in goals and 11th in points.
  • 2.) Isak Rosen: 4G + 5A = 9 Pts. Rosen is 17th in the AHL in points.
  • 3.) Mason Jobst: 4G + 3A = 7 Pts. Jobst is 16th in the AHL in power-play goals.
  • 4.) Jeremy Davies: 2G + 5A = 7 Pts.
  • 5.) Kale Clague: 1G + 6A = 7 Pts.
  • Shots Leader: Jeremy Davies with 27. Davies is 9th in the AHL in shots.
  • Power Play Points Leaders: 3 with 3 each (Brandon Biro has 4 but he is with the Buffalo Sabres).
  • Power Play Goals Leader: Aleksander Kisakov and Mason Jobst with 2 each.
  • Shorthanded Goals Leader: Justin Richards and Lukas Rousek with 1 each.
  • Game Winning Goals Leaders: Jiri Kulich and Isak Rosen with 2 each.
  • +/- Leader: Linus Weissbach at +5. Weissbach is 13th in the AHL in +/-.
  • PIM Leader: Joseph Cecconi with 26. Cecconi is 6th in the AHL in PIM.

Team Defense

Syracuse

  • Goals Against: 13.
  • Goals Against Per Game: 2.17 – 5th in the AHL.
  • Shots Allowed: 158.
  • Shots Allowed Per Game: 26.33 – 6th in the AHL.
  • Penalty Kill: 92.6% (25 for 27) – 2nd in the AHL.
  • Shorthanded Goals Scored (team): 1.

Rochester

  • Goals Against: 31.
  • Goals Against Per Game: 4.43 – 30th in the AHL.
  • Shots Allowed: 240.
  • Shots Allowed Per Game: 34.29 – 29th in the AHL.
  • Penalty Kill: 67.7% (21 for 31) – 31st in the AHL.
  • Shorthanded Goals Scored (team): 2.

Goaltenders

Syracuse

Hugo Alnefelt

  • Record: 2-1-0.
  • GAA: 2.00 – Alnefelt is 14th in the AHL in GAA.
  • Saves: 72.
  • Save Percentage: 0.923 – Alnefelt is 20th in the AHL in save percentage.
  • Shutouts: 1.

Pyotr Kochetkov

  • Record: 2-0-0.
  • GAA: 1.45 – Kocketkov is 2nd in the AHL in GAA.
  • Saves: 50.
  • Save Percentage: 0.943 – Kochetkov is 4th in the AHL in save percentage.
  • Shutouts: 1.

Rochester

Devin Cooley

  • Record: 3-0-1 – Cooley is 9th in the AHL in wins.
  • GAA: 3.46.
  • Saves: 130.
  • Save Percentage: 0.903.
  • Shutouts: 0.

Michael Houser

  • Record: 2-1-0.
  • GAA: 4.96.
  • Saves: 79.
  • Save Percentage: 0.840.
  • Shutouts: 0.

Wednesday night’s game is scheduled to begin at 7:05 p.m. EDT. Television coverage will be on AHLTV and the radio broadcast will be on ESPN Radio Syracuse. For more information about the Syracuse Crunch, including schedules and how to purchase tickets, visit https://syracusecrunch.com.

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