Tahoe Icemen head to Utah for weekend series against Outliers | TahoeDailyTribune.com

Tahoe Icemen head to Utah for weekend series against Outliers

Harper Dial
Special to the Tribune

The Tahoe Icemen this weekend head to Accord Ice Arena in West Valley City, Utah to face off against the Utah Outliers in the only scheduled matchup between the two teams.

There may be no recourse, or rematch, for the team that comes out on the losing end.

Icemen head coach Mickey Lang is looking for his team to put together a series of complete games after giving up leads late in contests.

"In order for the Icemen to have success they need to play the full three periods," Lang said. "Right now, we've blown four games with the lead going into the third."

The Icemen, second in the Northwest Division, also will need to stay on the ice against the third-place team from the Mountain Division. Tahoe has collected a staggering 675 penalty minutes so far this season, second most in the Western States Hockey League.

The Icemen will arrive in Utah with a 5-6-1 record in away games. They have 29 points in 24 games this season and have scored 110 goals while giving up 93. They have a 23 percent success rate on the power play and an 84 percent success rate killing penalties. The Icemen are coming off a three-game sweep of the Bellingham Blazers in Washington and sit behind eight teams out of 23 overall in the league.

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One of Tahoe's strengths this season has been scoring, even with fewer shots on net than they would like. The Ogden Mustangs shut down the Outliers in one of their head-to-head games, but they couldn't shut out Tahoe.

Likewise, the Idaho IceCats, undefeated and in first place in the Northwest Division, have allowed just 18 goals in 15 games and nine were scored by the Icemen. If the Icemen get their shots, they're likely to get on the board.

The Utah Outliers are perfect in seven games at home this season. They have 30 points in 20 games overall and have scored 98 goals while giving up just 34. They have a 21 percent success rate on the power play and are nearly perfect defending the power play with a 92 percent success rate killing penalties. The Outliers have collected half the amount of penalty minutes (338) this season as the Icemen. Tahoe will be hard pressed to draw the Outliers into any short-handed plays.

The Outliers are tied for seventh place overall in the WSHL.

Goaltending

The Icemen have three goalies. Wade Conlan has a .922 save percentage in 17 games, Thomas Spero has a .912 save percentage in 16 games and Maximilian Haselbacher has one assist and an .873 save percentage in 16 games.

The Utah Outliers have two goalies on their roster. Dawson Rodin has one assist and a .946 save percentage in 18 games and Otto Saxin has a .967 save percentage in 19 games.

Point leaders

Tahoe forward Paul Frys is the top scoring threat in this series. He leads the Icemen with 45 points in 24 games (21 goals and 24 assists) and is riding a three-game point streak after collecting eight points (5 goals, 3 assists) in the three-game sweep of the Blazers.

Outliers' defenseman Zach Hoffman leads his team with 32 points in 18 games (12 goals and 20 assists).

Watch the game

To watch up-to-the-minute score updates on the Icemen series against the Utah Outliers games, log onto: http://www.wshlstats.com/live_scoreboard.php. The Puck drops at 7 p.m. Friday, 6:30 p.m. on Saturday and at noon on Sunday. Utah is in a different time zone, one hour ahead of Tahoe.

The next home series for the Icemen will be Friday through Sunday, December 15-17, against the first place Idaho IceCats.