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Lock Monsters to face formidable foe tonight

LOWELL -- Wednesday, November 11, 1998

The top two teams in the Atlantic Division of the American Hockey League will face off tonight (7:05) and again Friday night at Tsongas Arena.

Tonight's will be the first meeting of the season between the first-place Lowell Lock Monsters (10-4-1, league-leading 21 points) and second-place Saint John Flames (8-3-4, 20 points).

Lowell, top minor league affiliate of the New York Islanders, is being powered by right winger Warren Luhning (7 goals, 8 assists), center Dmitri Nabokov (5 goals, 10 assists) and left wingers Mike Kennedy and Sean Haggerty (5 goals, 9 assists each).

Luhning leads the AHL in plus-minus with a plus-14 while Kennedy registered the first hat trick in Lock Monsters' history during a 6-4 win over Portland on Sunday.

Lowell goalie Marcel Cousineau leads the AHL with 9 wins and 2 shutouts and is fifth in save percentage (.927) and sixth in goals-against average (2.15).

Expected back in the Lock Monsters' lineup tonight is center Craig Charron, who missed five games while in Austria helping the U.S. reclaim its "A" pool status for the World Championships.

Upon center Charron's return, the Lock Monsters sent Mike Peron (1 goal, 1 assist in 5 games) to Roanoke of the East Coast Hockey League.

Leading Saint John in scoring is center Hnat Domenichelli (8 goals, 8 assists) while the Flames' Chris O'Sullivan, a former Boston University star, is the AHL's top-scoring defenseman (3 goals, 10 assists).

Saint John lost AHL Goalie of the Month for October, Jean-Sebastien Giguere, when he was promoted to the Calgary Flames and made 39 saves in a 3-1 win over Colorado on Sunday.