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11/14/2016 11:26 AM -
Wow, what an interesting week in America – upsets all around. After goring their way through the Midwestern Division, the El Paso Rhinos seem to have met their match when they rolled into Springfield and met the runaway train that is the Express.
After scoring nearly 10 goals a game going into the three-game tilt with Springfield, the Rhinos were held to just over two goals a game over the weekend. This is the second straight series in which El Paso ran into trouble after a tough match-up with Ontario last week, but this is the first time the Rhinos suffered a loss – let alone two.
Chaseton Sare, who is tied for the league lead in assists (29), scored the team’s only two goals on Friday with the first of the game coming with just four seconds left in the opening frame. After adding two assists in each of Saturday and Sunday’s games, Sare is now second on the team with 37 points (8-29-37) on the year. His 29 assists are tied with Nikita Nikitin of Long Beach.
Tymen Edelkoort earned his sixth win of the season, with a 1.45 goals-against average and a .936 save percentage, but saw three quick goals in the first period of Sunday’s contest and took the loss there.
Alex Johanson, with 39 points (18-21-39) after 15 games played, was held to just an assist over the weekend, and with a ridiculous 16 players in double-digit points, it seems shutting down that top line is the way to sweat the Rhinos.
The top five point producers in the Midwestern Division are Rhinos with number six (Oscar Gullstrom – Wichita) 13 points back of Johanson’s 39 points.
The Jr. Thunder will vist El Paso this weekend and try to get back on track before they head into the Thanksgiving holiday and the Tulsa Jr. Oilers. Seemingly, these two matchups look like just what El Paso needs to find their game, but after the past two series, they may find themselves in a pickle instead.
Their once-firm grasp on first place is now just a two-point lead, but with the next two teams facing off against each other this weekend, the Rhinos may be able to breathe a little easier come Monday.