WICHITAHOME: 5-4-0-0AWAY: 1-2-1-2OVERALL: 6-6-1-2
LEADING SCORERSGauthier, 14 pts (6g, 8a)Lowe, 13 pts (4g, 9a)Miller, 11 pts (6g, 5a)
MISSOURIHOME: 2-3-0-0AWAY: 4-5-0-0OVERALL: 6-8-0-0
LEADING SCORERSThinel, 14 pts (4g, 10a)Rutherford, 9 pts (4g, 5a)Lee, 8 pts (3g, 5a)
HEAD TO HEAD - This is the fifth of 10 meetings this season between the Thunder and the Mavericks. Wichita is 13-9-3 on the road vs. Missouri and 31-20-3 all-time.
TODAY - Wichita and Missouri meet for the first time at the Independence Events Center after playing the first four contests at INTRUST Bank Arena. Wichita leads the Independence Cup Series 3-1-0-0 with all four games being decided in regulation. Wichita is coming off of a 2-0 win against Quad City while the Mavericks lost to Allen on Wednesday night.
SHOTS, SHOTS, SHOTS - Wichita started out the season trying to find scoring chances. The Thunder averaged 23.33 shots per game in the first three contests. Over the last eight games, Wichita has eclipsed 30 or more shots and is averaging 35.33 shots per game over that stretch. The Thunder unloaded 26 shots in the second period and 49 shots against the Oilers last Tuesday, which are new season highs.
MILESTONES - Several players are approaching milestones. Mike Wilson is nearing 200 points and 400 career games. Nikita Kashirsky is approaching 100 goals for his career and 300 games. RG Flath is 12 points shy of 300 for his career. Todd Hosmer needs one point to reach 100. Theo Peckham is close to 1,000 PIM and 400 games. Kenton Miller is 18 points shy of 100 for his career.
MIDDLE MEN - Wichita has come out strong in the second period over the last few games. Last week, the Thunder averaged 18 shots on goal during the second, including 15 on net during Wednesday's game against Quad City. Six of Wichita's 11 goals last week occurred in the middle period.
GOOSE EGG - Tyler Bunz claimed his second shutout in the last five days and third of his pro career. Although he only saw 12 shots, he made a crucial save with less than two minutes left when Kevin Baker of Quad City was all alone in front and Bunz denied him the game-tying goal. Wichita netminders have three shutouts so far this season after only recording one last year (Brown vs. MIZ, Feb. 9th, 2014).
THUNDERBOLTS… Kenton Miller is tied for third in power play goals (4) while Danick Gauthier is tied in seventh with three on the man advantage...Wichita is first in the league in shots against per game (24.40)...Wichita is 1-1-0-1 when leading after one...Wichita is 4-2-0-0 when tied after one…Wichita is 5-4-0-2 when outshooting the opponent…Wichita is 4-1-0-0 in two-goal games...Wichita is 5-2-0-1 when scoring first...
MISSOURI NOTES - Missouri is dead last on the power play (9.2%) and 27th on the penalty kill (77.2), giving up the most goals on the man advantage in the league (18)...Josh Brittain has three goals in four games since being acquired from Kalamazoo...The Mavericks have lost 6-0 in two of the last three games, falling Wednesday night to Allen...Sebastien Thinel is the only Mav player with 10 points or more...
AROUND THE ECHL - There is a full slate today in the ECHL. Fort Wayne plays at Kalamazoo. Evansville is at Elmira. Orlando plays at Toledo. Greenville goes to Reading. Cincinnati travels to Indy. Florida plays at Wheeling. Quad City takes on Tulsa. Ontario goes to Colorado. Brampton stays in Rapid City. Utah plays at Stockton. Idaho travels to Alaska.
Individual tickets are on sale now. Don't delay! Tickets can be purchased at the INTRUST Arena Box office, by calling 755-SEAT or go online at www.selectaseat.com. Stay up-to-date on all the news during the season by visiting www.wichitathunder.com.
About the ECHL
The ECHL began in 1988-89 with five teams in four states and has grown into a coast-to-coast league with 28 teams in 20 states and one Canadian province for its 27th season in 2014-15. There have been 541 players who have started their career in the ECHL have gone on to play in the National Hockey League, including 29 who made their NHL debuts in the 2013-14 season. The ECHL had affiliations with 26 of the 30 NHL teams in 2013-14, marking the 17th consecutive season that the league had affiliations with at least 20 teams in the NHL. Further information on the ECHL is available on its website at ECHL.com, as well as on Twitter and Facebook.