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Dog Caller - Arizona Sundogs go fishing and hook a playoff spot

The Arizona Sundogs remained at home for games against the Denver Cutthroats on Wednesday, Friday, and Saturday.

Goalie Andrew Engelage was voted the #1 goalie in the CHL this week
Goalie Andrew Engelage was voted the #1 goalie in the CHL this week

The Sundogs and Cutthroats faced-off on Wednesday and Denver would strike first with a goal early in the opening period. Arizona forward Brandon Coccimiglio would tie the game with a power play goal midway through the first, assisted by Bryan Cameron and Kevin Baker.

Sundogs forward Kevin Baker would get the only goal of the second period with a beautiful unassisted shot.

Early in the third, the Cutthroats would tie the game and eventually send it to overtime where neither team would score. Denver would be unable to get one past Arizona's goalie in the shootout, while Sundogs' forwards Jason Morgan and Shawn Limpright would both light the lamp and earn the 3-2 victory. Arizona had 38 shots on goal and goalie Andrew Engelage stopped 23 of the 25 shots he faced.

The teams met again on Friday and Denver would strike first again with a goal early in the first. Five minutes later, Arizona forward Shawn Limpright would even the score, assisted by Bryan Cameron and Jason Morgan. Late in the first, the Cutthroats would take the lead once more.

Neither team would score again and Denver would get the 2-1 win. The Sundogs totaled 49 shots on goal and Engelage stopped 32 of the 34 shots on goal.

Saturday, the Sundogs would get the first goal when Coccimiglio would score on the power play, assisted by Jason Morgan and Garrett Clarke. Arizona defenseman Mark Isherwood would increase his team's lead, assisted by Coccimiglio and Jordan Clendenning. Late in the first, with his team on the power play, forward Kevin Baker would pad the Sundogs' lead, assisted by Shawn Limpright and Bryan Cameron.

Denver would score twice to pull within one in the middle frame. Late in the second, Cameron would once again give his team the two-goal lead, assisted by Limpright. Neither team would score in the third and the Sundogs would get the 4-2 victory. Arizona had 24 shots on goal and Engelage stopped 39 of the 41 shots he faced.

Big Dog of the Week

Big Dog of the Week this week is being awarded to Bryan Cameron. The forward has 47 points (19-28-47), 36 penalty minutes, and 192 shots in his 55 games with the Sundogs this season. The Brampton, Ontario native had one goal and three assists in his team's three games this week.

Honors & Awards

The CHL announced some of its end of the season awards this week.

The five finalists for the 2014 Man of the Year were named and among them was Sundogs' forward Sebastian Geoffrion. The CHL Man of the Year award is ‘presented annually to the Central Hockey League player adjudged to have best exemplified strong leadership qualities on and off the ice, while making significant and noteworthy humanitarian contributions to his community'.

The CHL' "Best of the Best" poll was released as well. Voting is conducted by CHL players, coaches and operational staff from each of the league's 10 teams. There are 50 categories with the top three vote-getters named in each. Arizona appeared in 11 of these categories.

Best Goaltender - 1. Andrew Engelage - Arizona

Best Goaltender in Shootouts - 2. Andrew Engelage - Arizona

Best Defensive Forward - 2. Jason Morgan - Arizona

Best Player on Face-Offs - 1. Jason Morgan - Arizona

Best Leader - 1. Jason Morgan - Arizona

Most Annoying Player - 1. Sebastian Geoffrion - Arizona 2. Garrett Clarke - Arizona

Best Team Uniforms (Overall) - 2. Arizona Sundogs

Best Team Website - 2. Arizona Sundogs

Best Use of Social Media - 3. Arizona Sundogs

Best Arena Concessions - 1. Tim's Toyota Center - Arizona

Best Host Hotel - 2. Hampton Inn - Arizona

Dog Bites

  • Sixty-three games into the season, Arizona is 30-27-6 with 66 points. They are 8th out of 10 teams in the CHL. The Sundogs have clinched a playoff spot, and are one point out of moving up to 7th place.
  • The Sundogs' special teams have an 18.87% power play percentage and an 84.41% penalty kill percentage, with six shorthanded goals scored and 11 allowed.
  • On 3/15 defenseman Alex Velischek was placed on 7-day I.R.; On 3/19 forward Sebastian Geoffrion was activated from I.R. and forward Riley Emmerson was moved from 7-day to 14-day I.R.
  • Forward Kevin Baker still leads the team in goals (32) and points (61).
  • Arizona finishes out the regular season at home with games against the Wichita Thunder on Wednesday, Friday, and Saturday.