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With 21 games left to play in the season, Chad Costello has a chance to do something that hasn’t happened in the ECHL in the past five seasons when Tyler and Justin Donati along with Ryan Kinasewich potted 100 points in a season. Considering that Costello has 85 points in 51 games for the best team in the ECHL, odds are he will surpass that 100-point mark unless an AHL call-up happens for him– which could be entirely possible.
Yet, focusing on what has happened with Costello, it shouldn’t be a shock that he is doing this well. Since he has turned pro full-time in 2008-09, Costello has gotten better and better each year and has surpassed his career-high in points already with 21 games to spare. The success he has had in the ECHL has been solid, too– with the Colorado Eagles being his team prior and put up 134 points in 83 games with the Eagles from 2011 to 2013, while picking up the 2011-12 ECHL MVP despite missing the last month with a knee injury.
Granted, it hasn’t all been easy for Costello, who saw hard times last season with a short tenure with the St. Charles Chill, which saw him play only six games before getting released; but also because he only played eight games with the Ontario Reign last season before having his season shut down. His tenures in the AHL haven’t been that stellar either, putting up only 17 points in 40 games with Bridgeport, Worcester, Springfield, and Lake Erie over three seasons (2010-13).
In signing with Allen, it was a chance to regain his confidence and his scoring touch, as well as a reunion with former Tulsa Oiler running mate Jack Combs; as the two ran roughshod over the ECHL until Combs decided to move along to Europe (and will now be moving to Stockton)– but it didn’t slow down Costello at all, who kept up his torrid pace. Even though he wasn’t on the ECHL All-Star team, Costello probably took that time as much needed rest, knowing that the Americans would probably be in a long playoff run– especially since they’re 18 points up on the 2nd place Quad City Mallards.
How the Americans were able to snatch up Costello before anyone else just shows how well the scouting that GM and coach Steve Martinson has put into making the first ECHL year in Allen a success. Costello was actually a guy Martinson was working on when the Americans were still in the CHL, as he revealed to me in an interview earlier this season.
It was been a stellar season for Costello. There has only be six games that he has been held pointless, which is quite the clip; plus he’s 26 points up on Brendan Connolly of the Alaska Aces. Minus a call-up in the next month and change, Costello is well on his way to a season to remember.