Round2Bracket

Conference Semifinals Preview


Western Conference Semifinals (Best of Seven)

#1 Missouri Mavericks vs. #4 Allen Americans
Series Matchup Sheet

A pair of Central Division rivals meet for the right to advance to the Western Conference Finals.

The Mavericks, who captured the Brabham Cup as ECHL regular-season champions, enter the series coming off of a sweep of Quad City in the Western Conference Quarterfinals. Rocco Carzo led the way offensively for Missouri in the series with six points (1g-5a) in the four games. Josh Robinson, the ECHL Goaltender of the Year, picked up three of the four wins against the Mallards, posting a 2.00 goals-against average and a .933 save percentage.

Allen eliminated Idaho 4 games to 3 in the opening round, winning Game 7 in overtime, and becoming just the 12th team in ECHL postseason history to win a best-of-seven series after trailing 3 games to 2. Chad Costello picked up where he left off in the regular season when he captured the ECHL scoring title and was named Most Valuable Player as he tallied nine points (1g-8a). Two-time Kelly Cup champion Riley Gill (Reading, 2013 and Allen, 2015) posted a 4-2 record with a 1.96 goals-against average and a .933 save percentage in six games.

During the 2015-16 regular season, the two teams met 11 times, with the Mavericks recording six wins. Sebastien Sylvestre was the top offensive threat for Missouri tallying six goals and 10 points while Robinson was 4-0-0, allowing just four goals in four games. Tristan King and David Makowski led Allen with four goals each, while Costello added a team-best 12 points (3g-9a). Late-season addition Jake Hildebrand appeared in four games against Missouri, going 3-1-0 with a 2.01 goals-against average.

Game 1 – Friday, April 29 at 7:05 p.m. CT at Missouri
Game 2 – Saturday, April 30 at 7:05 p.m. CT at Missouri
Game 3 – Wednesday, May 4 at 7:05 p.m. CT at Allen
Game 4 – Friday, May 6 at 7:05 p.m. CT at Allen
Game 5 – Sunday, May 8 at 4:05 p.m. CT at Allen (If Necessary)
Game 6 – Tuesday, May 10 at 7:05 p.m. CT at Missouri (If Necessary)
Game 7 – Wednesday, May 11 at 7:05 p.m. CT at Missouri (If Necessary)

#2 Fort Wayne Komets vs. #6 Utah Grizzlies
Series Matchup Sheet

Fort Wayne and Utah meet for the first-time ever in the Western Conference Semifinals.

The Komets are in the second round for the second consecutive season coming off a seven-game series win over Cincinnati after losing the first two games of the series on home ice. Four different Komets tallied seven points against the Cyclones, with Garrett Thompson scoring five goals, which is tied for third among all players in the playoffs. Pat Nagle posted two shutouts in the opening series, including a 2-0 win in Game 7. Fort Wayne’s penalty kill posted impressive numbers against Cincinnati, killing off 34 of the Cyclones’ 35 power-play opportunities (94.7 percent).

Utah reaches the second round of the Kelly Cup Playoffs for the fourth time in the last seven seasons. The Grizzlies dispatched Colorado 4 games to 2 in the Western Conference Quarterfinals, scoring an opening-round high 26 goals in the process. Charles Sarault is tied for the postseason lead with six goals and is tied for second with nine points. Ryan Faragher notched 3 of Utah’s four wins against the Eagles, posting a 2.20 goals-against average and a .923 save percentage.

Game 1 – Friday, April 29 at 8 p.m. ET at Fort Wayne
Game 2 – Saturday, April 30 at 7:30 p.m. ET at Fort Wayne
Game 3 – Wednesday, May 4 at 7 p.m. MT at Utah
Game 4 – Friday, May 6 at 7:30 p.m. MT at Utah
Game 5 – Saturday, May 7 at 7:30 p.m. MT at Utah (If Necessary)
Game 6 – Monday, May 9 at 7:30 p.m. ET at Fort Wayne (If Necessary)
Game 7 – Tuesday, May 10 at 7:30 p.m. ET at Fort Wayne (If Necessary)

Eastern Conference Semifinals (Best of Seven)

#2 South Carolina Stingrays vs. #6 Adirondack Thunder
Series Matchup Sheet

It’s a matchup of teacher vs. pupil as Adirondack takes on South Carolina. Thunder head coach Cail MacLean ended his playing career with the Stingrays, was an assistant coach on South Carolina’s 2009 Kelly Cup title squad and was the team’s head coach during the 2009-10 and 2010-11 seasons. Stingrays’ head coach Spencer Carbery was a player on the 2009 championship team before serving as MacLean’s assistant coach for two seasons. When MacLean accepted a job in the American Hockey League in 2011-12, Carebery took the reigns as South Carolina’s head coach.

South Carolina is in the second round for the second year in a row after advancing to the Kelly Cup Finals last season. The Stingrays eliminated Kalamazoo 4 games to 1 in the conference quarterfinals. Joe Devin led South Carolina in the first round with seven points (5g-2a) and his five goals are tied for third in the playoffs. Both Mark Dekanich and Vitek Vanecek saw time in goal for the Stingrays against Kalamazoo with Vanecek going 2-0 with a 1.50 goals-against average while Dekanich posted a 2-1 record and a 2.35 goals-against average.

Adirondack defeated Manchester 4 games to 1 in its opening-round series. The Thunder, who were 21-12-3 on the road during the regular season, picked up wins in all three games in Manchester during the series. Greg Wolfe (4g-3a), Mitchell Heard (3g-4a) and Peter MacArthur (2g-5a) led the Thunder during the series with seven points each. Ken Appleby played all five games in the series for Adirondack and ranks third with a .942 save percentage and fifth with a 1.75 goals-against average.

The two clubs met three times during the regular season with Adirondack going 2-1-0 against the Stingrays and South Carolina posting a 1-1-1 record. Michael Kirkpatrick led the way for the Thunder with three goals, while Stephan Vigier was the Stingrays’ top point producer in the head-to-head series, notching three assists.

Game 1 – Friday, April 29 at 7:05 p.m. ET at South Carolina
Game 2 – Saturday, April 30 at 7:05 p.m. ET at South Carolina
Game 3 – Tuesday, May 3 at 7 p.m. ET at Adirondack
Game 4 – Thursday, May 5 at 7:30 p.m. ET at Adirondack
Game 5 – Saturday, May 7 at 7:35 p.m. ET at Adirondack (If Necessary)
Game 6 – Tuesday, May 10 at 7:05 p.m. ET at South Carolina (If Necessary)
Game 7 – Wednesday, May 11 at 7:05 p.m. ET at South Carolina (If Necessary)

#5 Wheeling Nailers vs. #8 Reading Royals
Series Matchup Sheet

Wheeling and Reading meet in the Kelly Cup Playoffs for the third time, but for the first time since 2006. Reading defeated the Nailers 3 games to 2 in the 2004 Northern Division Semifinals while Wheeling eliminated the Royals 3 games to 1 in the 2006 North Division Semifinals.

The Nailers dispatched Florida 4 games to 2 in the first round, winning the final three games of the series, all by one goal. Riley Brace led all ECHL players in the conference quarterfinals, totaling 10 points (3g-7a) in the six games. Mathew Maione, the ECHL Defenseman of the Year, is right behind him, and leads all blueliners in the playoffs with nine points (4g-5a). In goal, Brian Foster posted a 3-1 record in four outings against Florida.

Reading defeated Eastern Conference top-seed Toledo in seven games in the opening round, winning three of the four games it played on the road. Brandon Alderson is tied for the playoff lead with six goals and is tied for fourth with eight points. Martin Ouellette won four of his five appearances in the conference quarterfinals, posting a 2.72 goals-against average.

Wheeling won seven of the 11 head-to-head meetings between the two teams in the 2015-16 regular season. Cody Wydo led the Nailers against Reading with five goals, while Brace tallied 14 points (3g-11a) in just nine games. Mike Pereira (2g-6a) and Cam Reid (3g-5a) led the way for the Royals in the season series with eight points each.

Game 1 – Friday, April 29 at 7:35 p.m. ET at Wheeling
Game 2 – Monday, May 2 at 7:05 p.m. ET at Wheeling
Game 3 – Wednesday, May 4 at 7 p.m. ET at Reading
Game 4 – Thursday, May 5 at 7 p.m. ET at Reading
Game 5 – Saturday, May 7 at 7 p.m. ET at Reading (If Necessary)
Game 6 – Monday, May 9 at 7:05 p.m. ET at Wheeling (If Necessary)
Game 7 – Wednesday, May 11 at 7:05 p.m. ET at Wheeling (If Necessary)

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