Western Conference notebook

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After posting an 11-2-0-0 record in the month of November, the Wolves are out to an 0-4-0-0 start to December… The four-game losing streak is their longest of the season… Jason Krog has a point in eight of his last nine games (3-9-12), while Steve Martins has one in seven of his last eight (4-6-10)… Brett Sterling has notched five multiple-goal games already this season, including a hat trick… He leads the club with 13 goals (13-8-21) in just 16 games.
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Goaltender Jimmy Howard has started five straight games for the Griffins, posting a 4-1-0 record with a 0.99 GAA and .954 save percentage over that span… The run has lifted Howard’s overall record back to .500 at 9-9-1 and lowered his season GAA to 2.70… Since earning only one point in a nine game stretch (0-8-0-1) from Oct. 28 to Nov. 21, Grand Rapids has secured at least one point in eight of its last 11 contests (6-3-1-1)… The Griffins conclude a six-game homestand with games this weekend against Hamilton and Milwaukee.
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Hamilton is currently without two of its top three scorers, as Sergei Kostitsyn (6-16-22) and Maxim Lapierre (7-7-14) are on recall to parent-club Montreal… Goaltender Jaroslav Halak, who is 4-4-2 for the Bulldogs this season, is also up with the Canadiens… Corey Locke’s 17 points (4-13-17) lead the active roster, but he is without a point in his last three games… Hamilton is winless in three straight (0-2-0-1) and is just 1-4-0-1 since a season-high three-game winning streak… The Bulldogs visit Grand Rapids and Syracuse this weekend.
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The Aeros are the AHL’s hottest team, bringing a season-high five-game winning streak into this weekend’s action… It marks Houston’s longest winning streak since also capturing five in a row from Nov. 4-17, 2006… Goaltender Nolan Schaefer has been between the pipes for all five wins, and his personal winning streak stretches to six games… In those six contests, Schaefer has posted a 1.47 GAA and a .944 save percentage… Houston concludes its New England tour with weekend games in Springfield, Worcester, and Providence.
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Rookie winger James Neal tallied a goal and an assist in the Stars’ 3-2 victory over San Antonio on Dec. 8, including the game-winner in overtime… It marked Neal’s first multiple-point game as a professional… Marius Holtet snapped a 10-game goal drought with a pair of lamp-lighters as part of Iowa’s 4-1 win at Milwaukee on Tuesday… Toby Petersen is fifth in the league with 30 points (13-17-30), including one in three straight outings (0-3-3) and five of his last six (2-5-7).
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Lake Erie is 0-3-1-1 in five games since a season-high three-game winning streak… Not counting shootouts, the Monsters have scored more than three goals in just three of their 25 games thus far… Chris Stewart paces the Monsters with nine goals on the season (9-6-15), and he has notched one in each of his last three games (3-0-3)… Stewart has a point in seven of his last eight outings (5-3-8), and his 15 points overall are tied for the team lead with Eric Healey (6-9-15).
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The Moose began a six-game homestand by going 0-1-0-1 against Houston in a two-game set last weekend… Manitoba hosts Lake Erie for an identical two-game set this Friday and Saturday… The Moose’s 2-1 shootout loss to Houston on Dec. 7 marked their first defeat in three shootouts this season… Prior to the setback, Manitoba had posted shootout victories over Rochester on Oct. 19 (6-5) and Quad City on Oct. 31 (3-2).
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Goaltender Pekka Rinne has allowed just one goal in each of his last three starts, stopping 80 of 83 shots (.964) over that span… Rinne has a record of 2-1-0 in the three games, including a tough-luck 1-0 loss to Grand Rapids on Dec. 2… Overall, Rinne has appeared in 21 of Milwaukee’s 24 games to this point (11-8-1)… After defeating Iowa, 4-1, on Tuesday, the Admirals square off with the Stars again on Friday, marking the fourth of 10 times this season that Milwaukee will play the same opponent two games in a row… The Admirals are 6-1-0-0 in such games thus far.
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The Rivermen sit at the bottom of the competitive West Division despite being two games over .500 at 10-8-2-3… Peoria has at least one game in hand on all seven of its fellow division members… Charles Linglet notched his 100th AHL point with a goal against Quad City on Dec. 7, a game Peoria eventually lost in a shootout, 3-2… Tuesday’s 5-0 win over Hamilton marked Peoria’s only home game against the Bulldogs this season, and Rochester makes its only visit to Carver Arena on Saturday.
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Quad City has won three straight games and 11 of its last 15 (11-4-0-0), lifting the Flames from eighth place in the West Division to a share of fourth, just six points out of the top spot… Krys Kolanos is riding a four-game goal-scoring streak (4-1-5) and a five-game point-scoring streak (4-2-6)… Since he joined the Flames for their Nov. 15 game, the club is 8-1-0-0 when he registers a point and 0-3-0-0 when he doesn’t… Carsen Germyn registered his 100th career assist in Quad City’s 4-3 win at Peoria on Dec. 8.
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Rochester has lost three straight games entering Thursday’s tilt at Chicago… That game marks the first of three consecutive games in Illinois for the Amerks, who will visit Rockford on Friday and Peoria on Saturday… The four-game road swing will end with an inter-conference, but intra-state, game at Albany on Dec. 19… Marek Zagrapan (2-1-3) and Stefan Meyer (1-2-3) currently have three-game scoring streaks.
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Rockford has won three straight games and is without a regulation loss in a season-high seven contests (5-0-0-2)… The IceHogs have gone to overtime in each of their last five games, with three of those further extending to a shootout… Winger Kris Versteeg has a seven-game scoring streak (3-6-9), and fellow winger Troy Brouwer leads the league with 10 power play goals on the campaign… Rockford has played a league-low eight home games thus far but owns the AHL’s top home record at 6-1-0-1.
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David Spina has scored five goals on the season (5-10-15), and four of them have come against Iowa (4-1-5)… Joel Perrault leads the team in goals (14) and points (27), and he currently has a seven-game scoring streak (6-3-9)… Enver Lisin boasts a six-game scoring streak (2-5-7)… San Antonio is 3-0-2-1 in its last six games that have extended beyond regulation… The Rampage are currently 3-3-1-0 on their 11-game homestand, which continues with tilts against Quad City and Rockford this weekend.
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Syracuse is 4-1-0-1 on its current seven-game road trip and 5-1-0-1 in its last seven games overall… This run has vaulted the Crunch into third place in the North Division at 12-14-1-1 for the season… The road swing ends with a game at Binghamton on Friday… Syracuse’s 4-1 win at Lake Erie on Dec. 8 concluded a stretch of playing seven games over nine days… Goaltender Tomas Popperle has won his last two starts and stopped 51 of 53 shots (.962) over that span.
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Rookie forward Jiri Tlusty, selected 13th overall by Toronto in the 2006 draft, registered four points (2-2-4) in his first three games back with the Marlies after spending more than a month with the parent Maple Leafs… Defenseman Derrick Walser has scored the game-winner in both of Toronto’s overtime victories this season, including in its 2-1 win over Binghamton on Dec. 8… Among all AHL defensemen, Walser is tied for first with nine goals and ranks third with 21 points in 24 games.