By Jim Byers, on 03/30/2014

Oklahoma City Barons (30-27-2-8) at Charlotte Checkers (35-30-1-2)      
Barons Game 68  |  Road Game 36  |  AHL Game 1009
March 30, 2014, 12:30 pm CDT  | Time Warner Cable Arena, Charlotte, NC
Radio: KXY 96.1 FM,
 Media Kit Link:

TODAY: The Barons wrap up a 2-game trip with the second of back-to-back games with the Charlotte Checkers (Carolina Hurricanes). This is the 10th of  12 meetings between the West Division rivals, who meet for the final time April 5-6 in Oklahoma City. Charlotte won the first 6 head-to-head matchups, the Barons swept a 2-game set at TWCA Feb. 7-9, but the Checkers took a shootout 3-2 last night. OKC is tied with Rochester for ninth in the Western Conference with 70 points, 3 back of Charlotte and Rockford, which share seventh in the conference, point-wise.

The Barons have guaranteed themselves a winning record for the third consecutive month. OKC is 6-3-1-2 in March with just this afternoon’s game remaining. The Barons were 7-2-0-1 in February and 6-5-0-0 in January. The Barons are 14-5-1-3 in the last 23 games dating to Jan. 30 and in that time established the two longest unbeaten streaks in club history: an 8-game string without a regulation or overtime loss from Jan. 30-Feb. 21 and a 7-game unbeaten stretch from Feb. 28-March 11. Twelve of the last 13 Barons games have been decided by one goal (or 1 goal plus an empty-netter), with the exception a 5-2 win over San Antonio March 11 in Oklahoma City. The Barons are 7-3-1-2 in their last 13. In one-goal decisions, OKC is 15-12-2-8. After today, the Barons have 8 games left, 2 on the road at Abbotsford and 6 at home, against Hamilton, Charlotte (2), Texas and Iowa (2).

has goals in 5 straight to establish a franchise record goal streak. The old mark of 4 was shared by Mark Arcobello from 2012-13 and Liam Reddox and Colin McDonald from 2010-11. Ford has 1 goal in each of the past 5 games and has lit the lamp in 6 of the past 7, totaling 6 goals and 3 assists in that span.

Richard Bachman has started 21 of the past 23 Barons games, going 13-5-3 in that span. Bachman is fourth in the AHL in minutes (2574:20) while facing the most shots (1422) and making the most saves (1293). Ty Rimmer, a member of the Central Hockey League’s All-Rookie team, was recalled by the Barons from Quad City on Monday and has backed up Bachman in each of the past two games. Rimmer, who played 3 games for the Barons in December, was 18-14-5 with 3 shutouts, a 2.84 goals-against average and .906 save percentage for the Mallards. Frans Tuohimma, a seventh-round pick by Edmonton in the 2011 NHL Entry Draft, was reassigned by the Oilers on Wednesday from his team in the SM-liiga in Finland and is on this trip. Tuohimma, 22, has spent most of the past 3 seasons in Finland.

and Roman Horak have missed the past 4 games  with upper and lower body injuries, respectively. Neither is on this 2-game trip to Charlotte. Kale Kessy has an upper-body injury and also did not accompany the team to Charlotte.

is tied for fourth in points among AHL defensemen with 45, on 11 goals and 34 assists. He already owns the club record for assists in a season by a defenseman (34), surpassing Justin Schultz’s 30 last season. The franchise record for points in a season by a defenseman (48), set in 34 games by Schultz during his Eddie Shore Defenseman of the Year campaign last season.

SHOOTOUT SNIPPETS: Curtis Hamilton’s shootout attempt last night was the first of his 136-game professional career. Central Hockey League Rookie of the Year Alex Lavoie, with the Barons on a PTO, scored OKC’s lone goal of the shootout. It was his first professional shootout goal, as he was 0-for-7 this season for the Allen Americans. Six of the Barons’ 8 shootout defeats have been on the road (they’ve dropped all their road tiebreakers). Last night was the third shootout all-time between the Barons and Checkers, with each at Time Warner Cable Arena. On Dec. 18, 2011, Charlotte defeated the Barons 3-2 in the game and 2-1 in the shootout with David LeNeveu in net for OKC and Mike Murphy for Charlotte. On Feb. 25, 2012 the Barons prevailed 3-2 in the game a 2-1 in the shootout with LeNeveu and John Muse in net.

AHL leading scorers since Feb. 2:
        Player                      Team     GP      G       A         PTS
1      Chris Terry              CHA       25       13     17       30
2      Zach Boychuk         CHA       25       10     19       29
3      Mark Arcobello      OKC      15       10     18       28
4      Alex Khokhlachev PRO       21       9        18       27
5      Andy Miele              POR       19       8        18       26
6      Brad Hunt               OKC      22       7        18       25
T7   Roman Horak        OKC      18       10     13       23
T7   Brett Sutter              CHA       25       10     13       23

Last 5 Games:
Date       Opp.      Result     OKC Goalie (GA, SV) Opp. Goalie              Attn.
Mar. 15   GR         L, 3-4       Bachman (4, 24)            McCollum (3, 27)         4,494
Mar. 21   @ Texas OTL, 3-4   Bachman (4, 38)            Nilstorp (3, 34)            5,808
Mar. 22   @ Texas L, 3-5       Brossoit (4, EN, 38)       Campbell (3, 31)         6,439
Mar. 25   SA          W, 2-1      Bachman (1, 33)            Houser (2, 23)             3,070
Mar. 29   @ Cha    SOL, 2-3  Bachman (2, 30)            Muse (2, 32)               8,232

Next 5 games (all times Central):
Date        Opp.         Site                                  Time       Broadcast
April 2      Hamilton    Cox Center                       7:00 pm   KXY 96.1 FM
April 5      Cha           Cox Center                       7:00 pm   TBA
April 6      Cha           Cox Center                       4:00 pm   KXY 96.1 FM
April 11    @ Abb       Sports/Entertainment Ctr   9:00 pm   KXY 96.1 FM
April 13    @ Abb       Sports/Entertainment Ctr   3:00 pm   KXY 96.1 FM

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