Credit: Clint Trahan / Abbotsford Heat
1. MAGIC MIKE: I’m guessing that January 15th, 2013 won’t be forgotten any time soon by Mike Matczak. The second-year pro and four-year Yale Bulldog recorded his first AHL goal and assist, and was named first star in the game. The defender was on the ice for all three Heat goals and looked the part in his second AHL game of the season with the Heat and ninth overall (he played seven with Manchester earlier in the season). A nice result for the New Jersey product and a great get by the Heat coaching staff with three defenders at Calgary Flames training camp.
2. TAYLOR’S TIDY TEAR: Danny Taylor’s last five games sure have been impressive. Ok, so it’s not a Brust-esque run of shutout play, but the new father now has allowed just five goals against in his last five appearances earning three wins and suffering just a single setback (a 1-0 loss to Chicago last Saturday) over the run. Since Christmas, Taylor has a 1.08 GAA, and a .947 SAV%… Nicely done, Dad!
3. FIGHT FOR MOMENTUM: Zach McKelvie scrapped with the Bulldog’s Kyle Hagel on the faceoff following Hamilton’s game-tying goal, and the momentum that was leaning the Bulldogs way seemed to be disolved. Just 12 seconds after a 1-0 lead was relinquished, the Heat were back up 2-1 courtesy Tyler Ruegsegger’s third of the year. I get the sense McKelvie’s scrap may have had a hand in setting up that goal.