Walleye Watch vs. Fort Wayne
When: Friday, 7:15 p.m.
Radio: 1230 AM
The Walleye's Connor Crisp keeps control of the puck despite the defense of Fort Wayne's Dennis Kravchenko, left, and Ryan Culkin, right, during a game earlier this year.
Blade/Amy E. Voigt Enlarge
Breakdown: The top two teams in the Central Division square off for the sixth of eight meetings this season. Toledo (21-10-3) leads the division by one point over Fort Wayne (21-11-2). … The Walleye are approaching the midpoint of the season, having played 34 of 72 games. The team faces a big weekend homestand with three division foes (Fort Wayne, Kansas City, and Cincinnati) coming to the Huntington Center through Sunday. Just four points separate first place (Toledo) from fourth place (KC). … The Walleye are just 1-4-1 against the Komets. The lone win came at home (6-3 on Nov. 16). … Toledo finished with a 5-1-0 record against Fort Wayne last season. … The teams meet one final time on April 6 in the penultimate game of the season for the Walleye. … The teams rank No. 1 and No. 2 in attendance in the ECHL. Fort Wayne has averaged 7,577 fans per game, while Toledo is second (7,448). … Fort Wayne leads the ECHL in scoring (3.94 goals per game), while Toledo ranks 12th (3.24). … The Walleye have allowed the third fewest goals (2.65 per game), while the Komets are 11th (2.97). … Fort Wayne ranks third in shots per game (36.74) and fifth in shots against (29.38). Toledo is 21st in shots for (30.09) and is fourth in shots against (29.06). … Toledo is 12-7-1 against Central foes, while Fort Wayne is 15-8-2 within the division. … The Walleye ended a two-game losing streak (in which they were shut out 3-0 in both games) with a 3-0 win over a tough Manchester team (21-12-3) at home last Saturday. Rookie G Matej Machovsky (5-6-1 with a 2.28 GAA) earned his first shutout. Machovsky and veteran Pat Nagle (16-3-2 with a 2.63 GAA) are both among the top 15 goalies in the league in goals-against average. ... F Erik Bradford leads Toledo in scoring with 26 points (9 goals, 17 assists) and Christian Hilbrich is second with a 13-12-25 line. … The Komets have two players ranked among the top 11 in the ECHL in scoring. F Shawn Szydlowski ranks fourth with 39 points (18 goals, 21 assists), while F Garrett Thompson is 11th with 35 points (15 goals, 20 assists). G Michael Houser (15-7-2) ranks 17th with a 2.75 GAA. … The Hanson Brothers, the famous siblings from the movie Slap Shot, will entertain the fans on Friday.
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