Beast Weekly Wrap | Fucale Records His First ECHL Shutout

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(Photo by Rabita Naqvi | Rocket Sports Media)

by Mike Ries, Staff Writer, AHL Report

(Photo by Rabita Naqvi | Rocket Sports Media)

BRAMPTON, ON. — In what was a relatively quiet week for the Brampton Beast, they managed to extend their franchise record winning streak to five games with a 5-2 win over the Adirondack Thunder on Thursday morning. However, they then played one of their worst games of the season in a 7-3 loss to the Thunder on Friday.

The proverbial letdown after a team reaches a milestone, happens in sports. That said, we should give the Beast credit as they bounced back with a solid 3-0 shutout of the Thunder the next night to complete the three-game series. Beginning on Tuesday, the Beast start an extended road trip that will take them from New York to Indiana, on to Ohio, and finally to Michigan before returning home.

Top prospect, Zach Fucale, has continued his torrid pace in goal with the Beast, most recently with a shutout against the Thunder on Saturday, his first in the ECHL. Fucale is consistently facing over 30 shots per game and it seems that he is relishing the workload.

In 17 games, Fucale has improved his record to 11-3-0 with a respectable 2.80 goals against average (GAA) and a .906 save percentage (Sv%). In his recent string of victories, Fucale has been almost unbeatable, sporting over a .930 Sv%. His play has been the main reason the Beast were able to improve their record to 14-8-0-1.

Brampton Beast forward, Mathieu Gagnon, was recalled to St. John’s of the AHL as the roster shuffle continued through the Montreal Canadiens organization. The Beast also said goodbye to one of their top defenceman, Mike Vernace, who left the Beast to play in Austria for the remainder of the season.

With the departure of Vernace, the Beast signed 21-year-old defenceman, Ian Harris. Harris had been playing in the SPHL this season. Expect the Beast to continue to add players to their bottom half of their roster into 2017.

The top four forwards on the Beast, David Vallorani, David Pacan, Luke Pither and Brandon Marino have all scored at or over a point-per-game pace. Vallorani leads the team with 32 points in 25 games this season. Pacan leads the Beast in goals with 17 in 25 games. The top center, Pither, leads the team in assists with 19 in 22 games.

Leading in penalty minutes (PIM) is hard-nosed defenceman, Garrett Clarke, with 40 PIM in 22 games. He is followed by Yannick Veilleux with 31 PIM in only 11 games. Veilleux is a call up to the AHL this season and has been a physical force with the Beast.

This is the second season that the Beast have been the ECHL affiliate of the Montreal Canadiens and it has been strong so far. The Beast will be looking to make the push for the playoffs coming into 2017.

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