Peoria, Ill – An early three goal surge by the Peoria Rivermen was too much for the Rockford IceHogs to overcome as they fell 5-2 on Saturday at Carver Arena.
The IceHogs found themselves in familiar territory as they have started each preseason game trailing from the beginning in all four contests.
Peirce Norton put the Rivermen on the board first as he slid the puck past the glove of Hannu Toivonen at 1:52 in the first period. Zach Pearson was credited with the assist.
Then at 7:47, Ryan Palmer blasted the puck towards the net and Ethan Cox picked up the loose rubber and fired it to the back of the net. Anthony Nigro also factored in with a helper.
The Rivermen went up 3-0 when Chris Morehouse out reached a diving Toivonen to bury the goal. Mark Cundari had the assist, along with Nigro, who notched his second assist of the night.
The IceHogs struck quickly in the second, when defenseman Ivan Vishnevskiy fired a puck past Peoria's goaltender, Ben Bishop, at 1:12. Kyle Beach and Chris DiDomenico were each credited with an assist.
Soon after though, the Rivermen were able to extend the lead back up to three goals when Tyler Shattock tapped home a puck sitting on the doorstep following a brief scramble in front of the IceHogs net. Shattock's goal came at 15:37 on the power play. Adam Cracknell and Brett Sonne picked up their first points of the night with the assists.
The IceHogs were able to pick away at Peoria's three goal lead when a shot from Kyle Hagel poked out towards the left corner and a streaking Peter LeBlanc converted the rebound to cut the deficit to just two heading to the third period.
Then, at 6:57 in the third period, Peoria struck again to put the IceHogs away with a power play tally. Sonne tipped in a Dean Arsene wrist shot to put the Rivermen up 5-2. Cracknell also figured in on the play with his second assist on the night.
Toivonen turned away 17 shots in a losing effort, while Bishop stopped 21 shots to pickup the win. Bishop shined late in the second period, holding off a large surge by the IceHogs to keep his team up with a lead going into the third.
Next Home Game: Saturday, Oct. 9, 2010 vs. Manitoba Moose. The puck is set to drop at 4:35 p.m. The IceHogs begin the 2010-11 season against the Manitoba Moose and the first 5,000 fans will receive a 2010-11 IceHogs Magnet Schedule courtesy of U.S. Cellular, Dental Dimensions, Guerilla Graffix and the Illinois Pork Producers. Before the game on Saturday there is a fan festival from 1-4 p.m. where fans can enjoy music, food and entertainment.