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Off the Hook: Steelheads 3/10/09

Monday, March 9th
Off the Hook: Steelheads 3/10/09

After sweeping division-rival Victoria three games at home, the Idaho Steelheads rank second overall in the ECHL and are atop the National Conference for the first time all season. The Steelheads? .649 winning percentage has the team slightly ahead of the Alaska Aces, which have .625%. The Aces are one point ahead of Idaho with 75 points over the Steelheads 74, but the Steelheads have three games in hand. Victoria has dropped to third in the division with a .567% and remains at 68 points.STEELHEADS REEL REWIND - WHAT A SERIES!The series against Victoria began with both teams tied with 68 points apiece and it was a battle to the end.• Whacky Game-Winner: Game 1 on Wednesday was neck-in-neck until Kyle Radke netted the game-winner with a ?whacky? goal. The puck deflected several feet in the air, to the point where Salmon Kings goaltender Todd Ford, and all the other players on the ice lost track of the puck. When the puck finally dropped to the ice, it landed behind Ford across the goal line to put the Steelheads on top, 3-2.? Buzzer-Beater: Perhaps the best game played since the 2007 Kelly Cup Playoffs, Game 2 was a nail-biter ?til the end. Victoria scored just 7 seconds into the game, putting the pressure on Idaho early. There were no penalties called until 16:55 in the first period, when Victoria got a roughing call, and as tensions mounted, Victoria got a slashing call, and the Steelheads tied the game on a 5-on-3. After two fights and lots of scoring, it looked like the game was headed to overtime, tied at 5 apiece, when captain Marty Flichel thrilled the crowd with the game-winner with just .5 seconds remaining on the clock.? Sweep It Up: Idaho completed the three-game sweep with a 4-1 victory on Saturday setting up what?s sure to be a great four games in Victoria next week. SOMEONE CALL THE DOCTOR?RYBAR?Steelheads fans may remember Joe Rybar, who played for Idaho during the 2002-03 season, and finished the season as the team?s leading scorer with 74 points (27g-47a) in 71 games. Well, Rybar, who turns 36 today, is now a family medicine physician at the Mayo Clinic in Rochester, Minn. He did his physician?s school work at St. George?s University in Grenada, finishing last May. He now is serving as a physician in residency at Mayo. Rybar and his wife, Jennifer, have two kids, Brayden (29 months) and Emily (3 months). Rybar was inducted into the Peoria Rivermen Hockey Hall of Fame over the weekend as the all-time points leader in the franchise?s ECHL era.AT THE SHOWCurrently two ex-Steelheads are playing in the NHL. Warren Peters, who played with Idaho during the 2003-04 and 2004-05 season, has played six games and tallied his first NHL goal on Mar. 3 in his first NHL call up with the Calgary Flames. Ben Ondrus, who played just four games with Idaho during the 2003-03 season has appeared in 44 games with the Toronto Maple Leafs. Also this year, 2007 Kelly Cup Champion Zenon Konopka played three games with the Tampa Bay Lightning this season; 35 total NHL games, and goaltender Dan Ellis with the Nashville Predators, has minded the net for 33 games this season and 44 last season.STEELHEADS BITES? Marty Flichel has a goal and two assists in two games since returning from the IR? Dan Welch is on a four-game point streak (2 G, 3 A)? Garett Bembridge is on a six-game point streak (3 G, 5 A)IDAHO STEELHEADS AT-A-GLANCE74 Points; 1st West Division, 1st National Conference, 2nd OverallOverall: 35-18-2-2 (68 points) Home: 19-9-0-1 (home)Away: 16-9-2-1 (road)Streak: 4-0-0-1Past 10: 7-2-0-1ECHL NATIONAL CONFERENCE, DIVISION STANDINGS West GP W L OTL PTS PCTIdaho Steelheads 57 35 18 4 74 0.649Alaska Aces 60 36 21 3 75 0.625Victoria Salmon Kings 60 31 23 6 68 0.567Utah Grizzlies 60 23 22 15 61 0.508Phoenix RoadRunners 57 26 28 3 55 0.482 Pacific GP W L OTL PTS PCTOntario Reign 60 34 22 4 72 0.600Las Vegas Wranglers 61 27 26 8 62 0.508Stockton Thunder 63 29 29 5 63 0.500Bakersfield Condors 62 26 29 7 59 0.476ROSTER TRANSACTIONS (3/03/09 ? 3/10/09)3/9/09 Delete Mark Bomersback, F loaned to Binghamton (AHL) 3/9/09 Delete Bryan McGregor, F loaned to Binghamton (AHL)3/6/09 Add Marty Flichel, F activated off the IRSTEELHEADS SCHEDULE THIS WEEKFour road games on the docket this week:Tuesday, Mar. 10: Practice at Qwest Arena, 10-11:00 am; Travel to UtahWednesday, Mar. 11: Game Night @ Utah; 7:00 PM MTThursday, Mar. 12: Travel to Las VegasFriday, Mar. 13: Game Night @ Las Vegas; 8:30 PM MT Saturday, Mar. 14: Game Night @ Las Vegas; 8:30 PM MT Sunday, Mar. 15: Travel to Utah; Game Night @ Utah; 7:00 PM MTMonday, Mar. 16: Travel to BoiseSTEELHEADS GAME SCHEDULEThe following is a schedule of games left to be played in the 2008-09 season:OPPONENT DAY DATE58 at Utah 3/11/200959 at Las Vegas 3/13/200960 at Las Vegas 3/14/200961 at Utah 3/15/200962 at Victoria 3/18/200963 at Victoria 3/20/200964 at Victoria 3/21/200965 at Victoria 3/22/200966 Ontario Wed 3/25/200967 Ontario Fri 3/27/200968 Ontario Sat 3/28/200969 Phoenix Tue 3/31/200970 Phoenix Wed 4/1/200971 Phoenix Fri 4/3/200972 Phoenix Sat 4/4/2009STEELHEADS AT HOOTERS!Join Voice of the Steelheads Doug Plagens and Will Hoenike Monday nights at Hooters when the team is in town for the Bud Light Idaho Steelheads Hockey Show from 6pm-7pm. BROADCAST INFOListen to all 72 games with Doug Plagens calling the action. Doug is joined in the booth this season by Steelheads players who will provide color commentary. Tune in to ESPN Radio 1350 KTIK the Ticket on games nights as well as Monday though Friday at 6:00 pm for the Bud Light Idaho Steelheads Hockey Show as Doug and Will Hoenike talk all things Steelheads. All home and road games can be watched through a link on the Steelheads website provided by B2 Networks for $6 a game.TICKET INFOThe Idaho Steelheads offer a variety of ticket plans to fit any schedule or pocket book. Call (208) 383-0080 to find out more. For day of game tickets, visit idahosteelheads.com and use the print at home feature, or call (208) 331-TIXS or visit the box office at Qwest Arena.- www.idahosteelheads.com -

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