Admirals (23-32-5-1) at Manchester (35-20-3-2)
Sunday is the sixth and final meeting of the season between the Monarchs and Admirals this season. The former AHL opponents have played a total of 22 times since joining the ECHL. Manchester holds the overall lead in the series having won 14 of the contests, and taking a point in 20. This season Norfolk is 1-4-0-0 against the Monarchs with the lone victory coming on November 4 at the Scope. Last year the teams split the season series with each side claiming four victories.
Manchester’s captain Jordan LaValle-Smotherman is one of four Monarchs to record five points against the Admirals this season. LaVallee-Smotherman and Matt Marcinew have each scored a trio of goals against Norfolk this season. The two forwards are joined by only four other active Monarchs on the list of active players who have scored against the Admirals this season.
Defenseman Michael Young leads Norfolk with five points (1g, 4a) in four games. TJ Melancon and Tommy Schutt are the Admirals leading goal scorers against Manchester with two goals apiece. Grant Besse and Kenton Helgesen have each scored once against Manchester.
Jamie Murray (2gp) and Ty Reichenbach (1gp) have each faced the Monarchs this season, while the Admirals have faced both Manchester’s Evan Cowley and Charles Williams.
Scouting the Monarchs:
Manchester currently leads the North Division with 75 points, one point clear of second place Adirondack and two points clear of third place Reading. The Monarchs also hold a game in hand on each of the three teams in playoff spots in the North Division. LaVallee-Smotherman, who ranks third in the ECHL in points, leads the team with 63 points (30g, 33a). The forward ranks second in the ECHL in goals, nine back from league leader Michael Joly. After LaVallee-Smotherman, Manchester has six players that have eclipsed the 30=-point mark. Joel Lowry and Matt Leitner rank second on the team each with 37 points.
Charles Williams has played the bulk of the games for the Monarchs, starting 35 games this season. The netminder is 20-9-3-1, with a 2.60 goals against average, and a .917 save percentage. Evan Cowley, whom the Admirals faced once, has appeared in 13 games going 5-7-0-1 with a 3.30 goals against average and a .897 save percentage.
Starting to Wrap Up On The Road:
After Sunday’s game the Admirals will only have four more road games this season. Norfolk will travel to Estero, FL for a trio of games against the Everblades in two weeks, before finishing the season on the road with one game against the Reading Royals. The Admirals are 11-18-2-0 away from home this season.
Forward Matt McMorrow and defenseman Romain Chuard each had career milestones on the road trip for the Admirals. McMorrow, recently signed to an ATO out of Babson College, made his professional debut on Saturday night against Adirondack. Chuard netted his first professional point in North America on Friday night with an assist against the Beast.