Thursday, March 12, 2015

Game 61: Grand Rapids Griffins at Charlotte Checkers

Puck Drop: Thursday, 7 p.m.

TV/Radio infoAHL Live / Online

Records: Checkers (23-31-5-1), Griffins (36-17-6-1)

The Charlotte Checkers, who narrowly missed sending Tuesday night's game to overtime thanks to a strong push with Drew MacIntyre off for an extra attacker, gave the hottest team in the AHL just about all they could handle in an eventual 3-2 loss.

Rookie left wing Brock McGinn continued his torrid offensive pace with the Checkers' first goal on Tuesday. The 21-year-old second-round pick now has seven points (6g, 1a) over his last 10 games and 20 points (11g, 9a) on the season.

Tonight is the second of four games this week for the Checkers. Following this series with the Rapids, the team will head on a season-long six-game road trip, starting with a pair of games in Oklahoma City.

Recent Transactions: The Checkers released Gabriel Desjardins from his PTO on Wednesday.

Notes: The Griffins win over the Checkers on Tuesday ran their current point streak to 16 games. That matches the longest such streak in the franchise's history and is the longest in the AHL since the 2011-12 season. ... Grand Rapids rookie Andrea Athanasiou, who scored a highlight-reel goal on Tuesday, now has 13 goals on the season. ... Zach Boychuk (10-7-17) has points in five-straight games and 10 over his last 11 contests. ... Rookie Trevor Carrick (6-13-19) leads all Checkers defenseman in scoring and has five points in his last five games. ... Justin Shugg (16-15-31) has eight points in his last nine contests. ... Tonight's game will be Brendan Woods' 99th as a professional. ... Tonight is the sixth of eight regular-season games between the Griffins and Checkers. Grand Rapids has won four of the five games thus far. ... The Griffins are 17-1-3-0 over their last 21 and currently sit first in the Western Conference.

Checkers lines:  

Zach Boychuk-Brody Sutter-Patrick Brown
Brock McGinn-Brendan Woods- Justin Shugg
Phil Di Giuseppe-Ben Holmstrom-Alex Aleardi
Kyle Hagel-Sean Dolan-Jared Staal

Trevor Carrick-Danny Biega
Dennis Robertson-Mike Cornell
Austin Levi-Beau Schmitz

Drew MacIntyre
John Muse

Healthy scratches: Carter Sandlak

Injured/out: Forwards Chad LaRose (upper Body) and Greg Nemisz (knee) and defenseman Keegan Lowe (undisclosed) have been ruled out of Thursday's game due to injuries.