Fuel open road schedule Saturday against Kansas City
FANIMATION GAME PREVIEW: FUEL AT MAVERICKSOct 27, 2018
FANIMATION GAME PREVIEW: FUEL AT MAVERICKS
SATURDAY, OCTOBER 27 - 8:05 P.M.
SILVERSTEIN EYE CENTERS ARENA, INDEPENDENCE, MO.
TICKETS: TICKETMASTER, INDIANA FARMERS COLISEUM BOX OFFICE
BROADCAST INFO: ECHL.TV
THE MATCHUP: The Indy Fuel (3-1-0-0) look to build on the best start in franchise history Saturday as they open their 2018-19 road schedule against the Kansas City Mavericks (2-1-1-0) at Silverstein Eye Centers Arena. Indy's only trip of the season to Independence opens a four-game season series against the Mavericks, who returned to the ECHL's Mountain Division over the offseason.
The Fuel finished with a 4-1-0-0 record over Kansas City a year ago, edging the Mavericks down the stretch in the race for the final playoff berth in the Central Division. Indy was a perfect 3-0 in three visits to Silverstein Eye Centers Arena in 2017-18, with the most recent victory coming in a 4-1 decision on April 3.
LAST TIME OUT: Indy claimed the top spot in the Central Division standings after Week 2 by sweeping a two-game homestand at Indiana Farmers Coliseum, punctuated with a thrilling 4-3 overtime win over the Toledo Walleye on Oct. 20. After Toledo scored a late go-ahead goal with under a minute left in regulation, Brett Welychka connected on the power play to even the score with 33 seconds left on the clock.
Quentin Shore potted the game-winning tally in the late stages of the extra frame to complete the comeback, and Matt Tomkins cemented his Goaltender of the Week performance with 33 saves. Matt Rupert and Connor Moynihan also found the net for Indy, which won its third straight game on home ice.
DEPTH CHARGE: The Fuel's offense has been as dangerous as advertised through four games this season, with the club's 4.25 goals per game tied for second most in the ECHL. Indy has been finding the net by committee so far, with a whopping seven players tied for the team goal-scoring lead with two each. Thirteen of Indy's 18 skaters who have seen action this year have at least two points, with veteran forward Josh Shalla (2g, 5a) leading the way with seven points in four contests.
EARNING THE HARDWARE: Complimenting the Fuel's offensive depth has been excellent play from goaltender Matt Tomkins. The second-year netminder was named CCM/ECHL Goaltender of the Week for the second time in his career, stopping 72 of 76 shots in victories over Cincinnati and Toledo. Under contract with the AHL's Rockford IceHogs, Tomkins is tied for the league lead with three wins this season, while his 2.46 goals against average ranks ninth.
HITTING THE HIGHWAY: After starting the season with four straight games on home ice, Saturday marks the beginning of the first road-heavy portion of Indy's schedule. The Fuel will play seven of their next 10 away from Indiana Farmers Coliseum over the next four weeks. Following a rare one-game week this weekend in Independence, Indy is tasked with four games in five days from Oct. 30 to Nov. 3, starting with a Tuesday-Thursday homestand against Idaho and Utah, before stops in Fort Wayne and Wheeling on Saturday and Sunday.