Overall record: 32-20-2-4 (Home 15-11-1-4, Away 17-9-1-0)
Last week’s record: 2-2-0-0
Previous 10: 6-3-1-0
Standings: 3rd – East Division, 5th – Eastern Conference
The Checkers finished a six-game homestand last week before jumping straight into a four-game road trip. The week started with losses to Albany and Binghamton, but the Checkers rebounded with road wins in Adirondack and Hershey, improving to 6-2-1-0 in February. The playoff push continues this week when the team travels to Syracuse before returning to host the Connecticut Whale Thursday and Saturday.
WEEK IN REVIEW
Game 55: Tuesday, Feb. 15 – vs. ALB (L, 3-0)
Checkers Blanked By Devils
Three unanswered tallies and solid goaltending from Dave Caruso were the difference as Albany defeated Charlotte, 3-0, at Time Warner Cable Arena. Adam Henrique was the game’s offensive star and scored two goals, including his second game-winner against Charlotte this season. Justin Pogge made 25 saves in a losing effort for the Checkers, who were shut out for the third time this season.
Game 56: Friday, Feb. 18 – at BNG (L, 6-2)
Checkers Stumble In Road Opener
The Senators used five straight goals and a hat trick by Jim O’Brien to down Charlotte, 6-2, at Broome County War Memorial Arena. Binghamton goalie Barry Brust made 37 saves on 39 shots to win his eighth straight start, while improving to 3-0-0 against the Checkers this season. Brett Sutter and Jacob Micflikier scored for the Checkers, while Justin Pogge made 36 saves in a losing effort.
Game 57: Saturday, Feb. 19 – at ADK (W, 3-2)
Checkers Stun Phantoms In Shootout Win
Zach Boychuk’s goal in the seventh round of the shootout was the difference as Charlotte defeated Adirondack, 3-2, at Glens Falls Civic Center. Drayson Bowman and Jacob Micflikier also scored shootout goals for the Checkers, while Mike Murphy stopped five of the Phantoms’ seven attempts, after he made 37 saves on 39 shots through regulation and overtime. Matt Pistilli scored with less than 30 seconds left in regulation to send the game to extra time, while Adirondack goaltender Michael Leighton took the loss despite making 26 saves.
Game 58: Sunday, Feb. 20 – at HER (W, 5-0)
Murphy, Defense Shine in 5-0 Win Over Hershey
Mike Murphy made 20 saves and earned Charlotte its first shutout of the season as the Checkers blanked the Bears, 5-0, at Giant Center. Bryan Rodney led the way offensively for Charlotte with one goal and two assists, on a day that five different Checkers scored goals. Braden Holtby allowed all five goals for the Bears, who were shut-out for the first time at home in two years.
THIS WEEK’S GAMES
Tue., Feb 22 at Syracuse Crunch, 7 p.m.
Thu., Feb 24 vs. Connecticut Whale, 7 p.m.
Fri., Feb 25 at Norfolk Admirals, 7:30 p.m.
Sat., Feb 26 vs. Connecticut Whale, 7 p.m.
A LOOK AHEAD
Tuesday vs. Syracuse Crunch, 7 p.m.
Watch/Listen: AHLLive.com, WBCN 1660AM
Charlotte finishes its four-game road trip against the Syracuse Crunch on Tuesday night. In the only prior meetings, the clubs split a two-game series at Time Warner Cable Arena in December, including a 10-3 Charlotte win. Since that win, the Crunch has gone 11-18-1-1 and is in last place in the Eastern Conference with a record of 19-30-2-4.
Thursday and Saturday vs. Connecticut Whale, 7 p.m.
Watch/Listen: AHLLive.com, WFNZ 610AM
Thursday promotion: Show your Harris Teeter VIC Card for $5 off any seat in the house. Get $3 12oz. Bud Lights.
Saturday promotion: Free Checkers backpack to the first 3,000 fans. Bring new or like-new clothing and get a free ticket to the Mar. 27 game.
The Checkers host Connecticut (formerly Hartford Wolf Pack) for the first time this season on Thursday and Saturday. The only other meeting this season was a 4-2 Checkers loss at XL Center on opening night. The Whale currently holds down the final Eastern Conference playoff spot with 62 points. Players to note on Connecticut's roster are former ECHL Checkers captain Jared Nightingale and former NHL All-Star Wade Redden.
Friday at Norfolk Admirals, 7 p.m.
Watch/Listen: AHLLive.com, WBCN 1660AM
On Friday, the Checkers make their final visit to Norfolk Scope in the regular season, where they are 5-0-0-0 this season. The Checkers are 6-2-0-1 against the Admirals overall and won at home on Feb. 3, breaking a trend in which the road team won the first eight games of the season series. After Friday, the Checkers and Admirals are due to meet once more this season and they enter the week separated by just two points in the standings.
* Mike Murphy is 15-2-0 in his last 17 starts and has won six straight games overall. Murphy recorded the Checkers’ first-ever AHL shutout on Sunday in Hershey.
* Forward Zac Dalpe leads all AHL rookies with 38 points (17g, 21a) in just 39 games.
* Chris Terry has two goals and three assists in the last three games.
* Zack FitzGerald played his 300th pro game on Saturday at Adirondack.
* The Checkers lead the AHL with 199 goals.
* The Checkers are: 6-0-0-0 when Bryan Rodney scores, 6-0-1-1 when Drayson Bowman scores, 4-0-0-0 when Nicolas Blanchard scores and 2-0-0-0- when Matt Pistilli scores.
* Charlotte is one of only five teams in the league with less than 10 losses on the road and has won 15 of its last 20 away from Charlotte (15-5-0).
Goals: Micflikier/Terry (22)
Assists: Osala (28)
Points: Micflikier/Terry (45)
PIM: FitzGerald (162)
Plus/Minus: Jordan (+11)
Wins: Murphy (17)
GAA: Murphy (2.80)
Save %: Pogge (.911)