Thursday, November 13, 2014

B³ Weekend Preview: Youngstown Phantoms

16 hours away in Youngstown, OH, the Lincoln Stars are gearing up for a weekend series against the hometown Phantoms hockey club.  The two teams will play Friday evening, and Sunday afternoon.

Puck drops at 6:05pm CST on Friday, and at 4:05pm CST on Sunday.

If you you'd like to keep track of the Stars this weekend in Youngstown, you can follow the boxscores online via Pointstreak, listen to Stars radio announcer Mike Melbye on 93.7 FM "The Ticket," or watch the games live on FASTHockey for a fee.

The Phantoms enter these two games against Lincoln with a record of 7-5-1 (15 points), and are currently in fifth place in the USHL eastern conference.  The Phantoms are 4-3-0 in seven home games this season, but they've lost their last two games at home.  In those two most recent home games, the Phantoms gave up 12 goals against.

These upcoming two games will be the only times the Stars and Phantoms will face one another during the 2014-15 regular season.  

Youngstown is led by talented '96 forward Kyle Connor, who is thought of by many pundits to be the top forward in the entire USHL.  Through 12 games so far this season, Connor has scored 16 points (6g, 10a).  Last season for the Phantoms, Connor racked up 74 points (31g, 43a) in 56 games played.  The Michigan native will attend the University of Michigan in the fall of 2015, and is considered to be an early first round selection in the 2015 NHL entry draft.

Another talented Phantoms forward to watch for this weekend is Maxim Letunov, who hails from Moscow, Russia.  Through 13 games this season, Letunov has scored 14 points (7g, 7a).  Last season for Youngstown, Letunov potted 43 points (19g, 24a) in 60 games played.  Letunov was drafted by the St. Louis Blues in the 2nd round of the 2014 NHL entry draft.  The tall, lanky Russian has committed to play his college hockey at Boston University, starting the fall of 2015.

A somewhat familiar name on the Phantoms' roster is '94 forward Ryan Lomberg, whom the Lincoln Stars traded to Youngstown back in August.  Click here to read more about how the Stars originally acquired Lomberg's USHL rights and some of the issues with his leaving the University of Maine.  Less than a month after he was acquired by the Stars, he was traded to the Youngstown Phantoms for three draft picks.  Lomberg was originally obtained by Lincoln from the Muskegon Lumberjacks for an 11th round Phase II draft pick in 2015.  So basically, the Stars turned that 11th round pick into 3 draft picks (2015 Phase I 3rd, Phase II 2nd, and 2016 Phase II 6th) in the trade with Youngstown.  Heck of a return.

The Stars are coming off what could be their best 60-minute effort of the season, which was a 5-2 drubbing of the Des Moines Buccaneers this past Tuesday evening at the IceBox in Lincoln.  Hopefully the boys can keep the positive momentum rolling this weekend in Youngstown, OH.

In other news....

The Stars announced today that the 11/7/14 game against the Sioux City Musketeers that was postponed has been rescheduled for Wednesday, February 25th.  Click here to read more about that.  Surprisingly, UNL has waived the parking fee for that game.  Honestly, I'm shocked that UNL would turn down the opportunity to collect money.

Anyway, I'll post recaps of the games this weekend here on the blog so come back for those.  

Thanks for reading.  Go Stars.

1 comment:

MacAttack said...

they did announce at the game last week to save your parking tickets as they would be honored when the game was rescheduled. maybe the U figured they already got their moneys worth from last Friday's game? plus the rescheduled game is on a weeknight so the attendance might not be quite the same as it was last week.