(Photo Credit: LSSU Athletics)
From last year, the Chargers of Alabama Huntsville have improved quite a lot to say the least. Quantifying some of this improvement can lend context to where Lance West’s team sits as they hopefully can get back on the ice soon after their quarantine due to Covid-19 ends. As of now, the next series is scheduled to take place one week from Friday at home against Michigan Tech in non conference play.
Going into that game, and given the improvement of this team, we felt it prudnent do differentiate between this group and last year’s in some numbers not shown in the top line of most scores. That is, these stats better quantify the difference in the two groups, while providing some more context about what this team is, and where it is going.
First, shooting percentage is one of the most noticeable improvements in the first eight games for this team. One year ago, the Chargers had five players with a double digit shooting percentage and shot a mere 6.5 percent as a team. Neither of those statistics are something worth shouting about, to say the least. This year’s group is significantly better. They are shooting 9.3 percent as a team this year. While that is not what this team wants to have as a top line number, the underlying facts of it are a bit better. So far, nine players have a double digit shooting percentage, as the team is generating better scoring chances than they did through this time last season. If the Chargers keep finding their game on offense, as they did on the Friday night game against Ferris State, one thinks that number would rise, and soon. This team shows it is able to do a lot with some opportunities, with more, the sky is the limit for them.
Again, while not perfectly indicative of this groups sucess, it is a lot better than at this point last year. In the previous campaign, these Chargers were a combined -104 through eight games. This season, they are -10 through eight games. This is probably the best indication of the improved team defense this team has. While not perfectly indicative of how this team is playing, it shows a bit better how they play when at even strength, which was one of their downfalls from last year. This team is, just at even strength, 90.3 percent better as shown through defense at even strength. Karlis Zirnis’ penalty kill mentality of outworking the opponent has made its way to the rest of the team .
As a team, the Chargers have 17 goals through their eight games this season. While everyone wants that number to be higher, in context compared to last year its an improvement overall. Through that amount of games last year, they had 10 goals scored through their first eight games. While this team has some more things to work on to rise up the standings, these improvements are another sign of the delete the past mentality. All of these statistics should not be taken as a pure guide to UAH’s improvement, but sign that this team is doing things the right way and is looking to improve from a better base than it had through eight games a year ago.
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