Weekend preview: 3/19 – 3/21; Titans begin critical stretch starting with three game homestand against Maine

Weekend preview: 3/19 – 3/21; Titans begin critical stretch starting with three game homestand against Maine

The Titans begin a critical five game stretch against opponents who are atop of them in the East Division standings: Maine Nordiques and Johnstown Tomahawks. This weekend the Titans will host the Nordiques for a three-game series at the Middletown Sports Complex starting Friday night at 7:30 PM. Saturday’s puck drop is at 7:00 PM while Sunday’s game time is at 5:00 PM. The Titans will travel to Johnstown the weekend of March 26 and 27.

Nordiques and Titans Overview
This will be meetings six and seven between the teams with Maine winning four of the five previous contests by a combined score of 19 to 11. The last time they met was at the end of January at the MSC with the Nordiques winning the first game 6 – 3 on January 29th, and the Titans winning the second bout 3- 1 back on January 30th.

Maine’s Isaiah Fox leads the Nordiques in total points with seven (4 goals and 3 assists) against New Jersey, and he also leads them in goals (four) against the Titans. In the five previous games, the Nordiques are 2 for 19 (11%) on the powerplay against the Red Buckets while their goaltending has a combined 2.16 goals against average and .937 save percentage with no shutouts against the Titans.

Evan Werner leads the Titans with five total points (3 goals and 2 assists) against Maine, and he leads the Red Buckets in goals (three) against them as well. Stephen Willey and Jake LaRusso each have hit the back of the net twice against the Nordiques. The Titans are 3 for 19 (16%) on the powerplay in the previous games against Maine while the Titans goaltenders have a combined 3.54 goals against average and .899 save percentage against the Nordiques.

Nordiques Overview
The Nordiques are currently in second place in the East Division with a 24-12-1-0 record for 49 points. They are three points behind division leading Johnstown, but the Tomahawks have three games on hand. Maine is coming off a 1 – 0 home win over the Danbury Jr. Hat Tricks (Maine took two of three against the Tricks last weekend), and they have won seven of their last ten games. The Nordiques have scored 111 goals on the season (sixth in the league) while they have allowed 99 (twelfth in the league). Maine is 23 for 152 (15.1%) on the powerplay (12th in the league), and they have allowed seven goals while on the man advantage.  The Nordiques are 88.6% efficient on the penalty kill (fourth in the league).

Tyler Gaulin (10 goals and 17 assists) and Fox (12 goals and 15 assists) each have a team best 27 points while Fox has scored the most goals (12) while Gaulin has the most game winning goals with four. Andrew Noel has a team best +12. Jack Strauss leads the team in penalty minutes with 82.

Maine’s Avery Sturtz and Tyriq Outen have a combined 2.57 goals against average and .925 save percentage with one shutout (Outen).

Titans Overview
The Titans are currently in third place in the East Division with a 19-11-2-4 for 44 points. They are five points behind the Nordiques, although the Titans have a game in hand. They are coming off a 4 – 2 home win over the Northeast Generals (New Jersey swept Northeast last weekend), and they have won eight out of their last ten games.  New Jersey has scored 132 goals on the season (third in the league) while they have allowed 113 (15th in the league). The Titans have converted on 19.3% (28 for 145) on the powerplay (6th in the league). They have allowed five goals while on the man advantage.  The Red Buckets are 84.3% efficient on the penalty kill (seventh in the league).

Nick Seitz leads the team with 31 total points (13 goals and 18 assists) while Werner leads the team in goals (17). Seitz also has the most game winning goals with three.  Jack Ford and Seitz have a team best +14. Brad Zona has a team high 103 penalty minutes.

The Titans have a combined 2.95 goals against average and .917 save percentage with two shutouts (Christian Stoever and Loudon Hogg).