Hutchings, Alex

ECHL Game Night: 10-7-11

Chicago Express 4 @ Florida Everblades 1

LW Alex Hutchings: 0-0-0, -1, 2 PIM (holding)
Last Season’s Totals: 51 GP, 13-13-26, -9, 41 PIM
G Pat Nagle: Did not play (backup)

The Florida Everblades made history Friday night, but not the way they wanted. The 'Blades dropped their season opener 4-1 to the Chicago Express, who was playing their inaugural game. Florida will now enter the Express record books as Chicago's first victim. The Express had four goals on Carolina prospect John Muse before the end of the second period. Lightning prospect Pat Nagle is supposed to get the nod Saturday. The Everblades got their first goal of the season in the third period by former Windsor Spitfire Justin Shugg, a Carolina Hurricanes draft pick. Norfolk Admirals property Philip-Michael Devos, the reigning QMJHL scoring champ, did not register a point for Florida. The teams play again Saturday night.

Admirals Send 3 to Everblades

The Tampa Bay Lightning reassigned forward Alex Hutchings and goaltender Pat Nagle to the ECHL's Florida Everblades today. In addition, the Lightning's to affiliate, the Norfolk Admirals, assigned forward Philip-Michael Devos to the Everblades. These moves were announced today by Admirals General Manager Julien BriseBois.

Hutchings (pictured) spent most of last season with the Everblades after nearly hitting 50 goals his final year of junior hockey with OHL Barrie. In his first year pro, Hutchings had 13 goals and 26 points in 51 ECHL games. He added three points in four playoff games with Florida, and was scoreless in his only appearance with the Admirals.

AHL Playoff Game Night: 4/20/11 Penguins at Admirals

Shorthanded Admirals can't quite get over the hump.

WBS-4
NOR-2

Series Tied at 2-2

Dustin Tokarski allowed 4 goals on 33 shots for the loss.

First Period
WBS Potter, (1) (Sill, Wagner), 4:48
NOR Harju, (1) (Pouliot, Fornataro), 16:04

Second Period
WBS Strait, (1) (Sterling, Vitale), 2:38
NOR Pouliot, (3) (Mihalik, Fornataro), 13:25
WBS Craig, (1) (Lerg, Sterling), 18:17 (PP)

Third Period
WBS Vitale, (1) (Collins, Potter), 15:38

Marc-Antoine Pouliot was named the game's second star.

Norfolk was allowed to insert Alex Hutchings in the lineup and they added Charles Landry, but they were still without 6 of their best forwards due to injuries and recalls. They may get one or both of Mattias Ritola and/or Blair Jones back for Game Five and with Tri-City being eliminated last night, there's the possibility of adding Carter Ashton to the lineup. Maybe they can get Angelidis or Berry back too? We'll see.

Game Five seems like a must-win, and the Admirals need as many hands on deck as possible.

Box score from TheAHL.com.

AHL Playoff Game Day: 4/19/11 Penguins at Admirals

A brave effort by the Admirals comes an eyelash short.

WBS-2
NOR-1

Norfolk Leads the Series 2-1

Dustin Tokarski allowed 2 goals on 25 shots for the loss.

First Period
WBS Veilleux, (2) , 17:58

Second Period
NOR Giliati, (1) (Roy, Vernace), 15:40 (PP)

Third Period
WBS Lerg, (1) (Hutchinson, Thiessen), 10:20 (PP)

Stefano Giliati and Tokarski were the game's second and third stars. Giliati played a heck of a game and was arguably the team's most dangerous forward.

Due to injuries, the Admirals were already without the services of Alex Berry and Mike Angelidis going into the week. They lost 2/3 of arguably the best line in the AHL to recall when Mattias Ritola and Blair Jones were moved up to Tampa Bay earlier in the day. Captain Chris Durno then went out very early in the game with an injury and never returned, and was soon followed to the locker room by Paul Szczechura, who was injured by Brian Strait after the whistle in a very questionable play. So, the Admirals played the Penguins to a stalemate with no less than 6 of their best forwards out of the lineup until a Pierre-Cedric Labrie double minor for high-sticking gave the Pens the opportunity to get the go-ahead goal.

The difficulty for the Admirals now is that Ritola and Jones won't return for Game Four tomorrow night, and Durno and Szczechura's injuries are obviously serious to have missed the remainder of the game when the team was so shorthanded. The Admirals do have a healthy Alex Hutchings on the roster, but Hutchings was not listed on the team's Clear Day roster as a player in residence. So the team may be very shorthanded again in Game Four. Tonight might have been the Admirals' best chance to get to a third win before Friday. You knew things were dire when Admirals radio voice Pete Michaud let a Freudian slip that the Pens were about to tie up the series if they could hold off Norfolk in the final few minutes of the game.

Box score from TheAHL.com.

ECHL Playoffs Game Night: 4/9/11

Kelly Cup Playoffs – Eastern Conference Quarterfinals

No.6 Florida Everblades 3 @ No.3 Kalamazoo Wings 5
Kalamazoo wins best of five series 3-1

LW Alex Hutchings: 1-0-1, E, 0 PIM, 5 SOG
Season Totals: 51 GP, 13-13-26, -9, 41 PIM
Playoff Totals: 4 GP, 1-2-3, -2, 6 PIM

Florida’s season came to an end Saturday with a 5-3 loss to Kalamazoo. The K-Wings won the series three games to one. The ‘Blades fought back from a 3-1 deficit to tie the game 3-3 midway through the third period, but Kalamazoo scored the game winner less than two minutes later then added an empty net goal. Hutchings’ first pro season comes to an end with a solid postseason showing where he finished second on the team in points. The former Barrie Colt will go into next year hoping to earn a spot on AHL Norfolk’s roster.

ECHL Playoffs Game Night: 4/8/11

Kelly Cup Playoffs – Eastern Conference Quarterfinals

No.6 Florida Everblades 3 @ No.3 Kalamazoo Wings 4
Kalamazoo leads best of five series 2-1

LW Alex Hutchings: 0-1-1, -1, 0 PIM, 0 SOG
Season Totals: 51 GP, 13-13-26, -9, 41 PIM
Playoff Totals: 3 GP, 0-2-2, -2, 6 PIM

Florida put up a good fight on the road, but a goal by former Vermont Catamount Brady Leisenring at the 8 minute mark of the third period put Kalamazoo up 4-3 for the game and eventually 2-1 in the series. Leisenring has played in three leagues (CHL, ECHL, AHL) this season. The ‘Blades will need a win Saturday in Michigan to stay alive. Lightning prospect Alex Hutchings notched his second point of the playoffs in the loss. Mike Zacharias stopped 30 shots in the loss and had an assist.

ECHL Playoffs Game Night: 4/6/11

Kelly Cup Playoffs – Eastern Conference Quarterfinals

No.3 Kalamazoo Wings 4 @ No.6 Florida Everblades 1
Best of five series tied 1-1

LW Alex Hutchings: 0-0-0, -2, 6 PIM (unsportsmanlike conduct, slashing, tripping), 2 SOG
Season Totals: 51 GP, 13-13-26, -9, 41 PIM
Playoff Totals: 2 GP, 0-1-1, -1, 6 PIM

The K-Wings scored three times in the first period en route to a 4-1 Game 2 win over the Florida Everblades. Florida now travels to Michigan for the next three games of the series and has to win two of them to keep their season alive. Alex Hutchings did not register a point Wednesday, but spent some time in the box feeling shame. Goaltender Bobby Goepfert was pulled in the second period down 4-0. Game 3 is Friday.

ECHL Playoffs Game Night: 4/5/11

Kelly Cup Playoffs – Eastern Conference Quarterfinals

No.3 Kalamazoo K-Wings 1 @ No.6 Florida Everblades 2
Florida leads best of five series 1-0

LW Alex Hutchings: 0-1-1, +1, 0 PIM, 0 SOG
Season Totals: 51 GP, 13-13-26, -9, 41 PIM
Playoff Totals: 1 GP, 0-1-1, +1, 0 PIM

The ‘Blades received stellar goaltending from Bobby Goepfert to defeat Kalamazoo 2-1 and take Game 1 of their opening round playoff series with the K-Wings. Goepfert stopped 31 of 32 shots for First Star honors. Lightning prospect Alex Hutchings had an assist in his first professional playoff game. Game 2 is Wednesday in southwest Florida. Games 3-5 will be played in Michigan.

ECHL Game Night: 4/2/11

South Carolina Stingrays 2 @ Florida Everblades 1 (SO)
LW Alex Hutchings: 0-0-0, E, 2 PIM (slashing), 1 SOG
Season totals: 51 GP, 13-13-26, -9, 41 PIM

The ‘Blades got at least a point out of their final game of the season, but with Wheeling getting a win and South Carolina getting both points, Florida fell back to sixth in the East. They will face No.3 Kalamazoo in the playoffs starting on Tuesday. The ‘Blades were in fourth after the first game of their three game series with South Carolina this week. Hutchings finished his first pro regular season with 13 goals and 26 points. It’s a little disappointing considering he was a 47 goal scorer for Barrie of the OHL last year and had over 80 points. Not everyone can make a smooth transition to the pro game, but Hutchings’ hockey sense and speed were thought to be enough to make more of an impact at the ECHL level.

ECHL Game Night: 4/1/11

South Carolina Stingrays 5 @ Florida Everblades 4
LW Alex Hutchings: 0-0-0, E, 2 PIM (cross-checking), 0 SOG
Season totals: 49 GP, 13-13-28, -9, 37 PIM

One game after the ‘Blades pulled ahead of South Carolina and Wheeling for fourth in the East, they fell behind again with a loss Friday to the Stingrays. Florida was down 2-0 and 5-2 in the game before mounting a comeback that fell short. They pulled within one goal with just under five minutes to go, but couldn’t get the equalizer. The ‘Blades are tied with the Stingrays for fifth at the moment, one point behind fourth place Wheeling. Florida has one more victory than South Carolina. All have one game left. South Carolina and Florida will play the final game of their regular seasons Saturday against each other in the Sunshine State. Goaltender Jaroslav Janus was recalled to AHL Norfolk Thursday.

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