WHAT: AHL REGULAR SEASON GAME
WHEN: Friday, October 5, @ 7:00 PM
WHERE: SAP Center – San Jose, CA
HOW TO FOLLOW: VIDEO: AHLTV – AUDIO – Mixlr (Away Feed) – TWITTER: @ontarioreign & @reigninsider
TONIGHT’S MATCHUP: The Ontario Reign open the 2018-19 regular season in San Jose with a divisional matchup against the Barracuda. Ontario and San Jose square off for the first of eight meetings on the season and the first of four in Northern California.
WHAT TO WATCH FOR: Tonight’s game marks the beginning of Ontario’s fourth season as a member of the American Hockey League. The Reign narrowed their roster to 24 players to open the regular season, consisting of two goaltenders, eight defensemen and 14 forwards. The Reign open on the road for the fourth consecutive season, having previously debuted against San Antonio, San Diego and Bakersfield. On the personnel side, Cal Petersen was the first goaltender off tonight for the Reign while forwards Boko Imama and Drake Rymsha, as well as defensemen Chaz Reddekopp and Austin Strand, were on late after morning skate.
FIRST THINGS FIRST: Ontario is 2-1 all time in regular-season openers. The Reign were defeated two goals to one in San Antonio last season but preceded it with victories over San Diego (2-0) in 2016 and Bakersfield (5-0) in 2015. Tonight’s matchup against San Jose marks the fourth straight season that the Reign have opened away from home, the third time that game has been in the State of California.
PERFECT IN THE PRE: The Reign concluded their 2018 preseason slate with a perfect 2-0 record, after a come-from-behind 4-3 victory over San Diego on Monday evening in Anaheim. Ontario came back in both of its preseason contests, a pair of victories over the Gulls, with both wins coming by the same scoreline. This marks the second straight year the Reign have gone unbeaten in the preseason, building off of a 3-0 mark a season ago.
TOTALLY KYLE: Ontario forward Kyle Bauman found the back of the net in each of his team’s preseason contests, including the game-winning goal on Monday. Bauman also scored the game-tying goal in last Thursday’s preseason opener and was the only Ontario player with multiple tallies in the preseason. Bauman joined the Reign at the end of last season on an AHL contract that continues through this season.
ETEM MY DUST: The Reign rounded out their Opening Night roster earlier this week with the signing of forward Emerson Etem to a PTO. Etem spent 2018 training camp in the NHL with the Kings and was the last player released from the NHL roster. The former Anaheim Ducks draft pick brings 173 NHL games to the Reign roster, in addition to 136 games at the AHL level. Etem has amassed 98 points (56-42-98) in his AHL career to date, including a career-best season in 2013-14 with the Norfolk Admirals, when he totaled 54 points (24-30-54) from 51 games played.
WE GOT THAT POWER: Ontario’s power-play unit was on the mark on Monday as it converted on three of four opportunities in the 4-3 victory over San Diego. Forward Zack Mitchell, along with defensemen Sean Walker and Austin Strand, tallied on the man advantage, which also struck once in Monday’s victory. Overall, Ontario converted 4 of 6 power play opportunities during the preseason, good for a 66.7% clip.