Rockford, Ill.- A three-goal first period was enough for the Toronto Marlies to knock off the Rockford IceHogs, 5-1, on Friday night at the Rockford MetroCentre.
The IceHogs got the scoring started. With the Marlies on the power play, a mishandled puck was left sitting behind Toronto's net. Igor Makarov was quick to capitalize on the mistake and wrapped the puck around for the shorthanded goal on an unaware Ben Scrivens at 1:22 in the first period.
The Marlies answered back quickly to tie the game at 1-1. Still on the power play, Simon Gysbers fired a slap shot from just inside the blueline that Jeff Cowan redirected past Hannu Toivonen. Juraj Mikus also factored in on the play.
Then, Toronto grabbed the lead when Marcel Mueller found Nazem Kadri open at the right circle. Kadri wristed a shot on net and Brayden Irwin was there to redirect the shot past Toivonen to make it 2-1 at 4:24 in the first.
The Marlies tacked on another marker with another redirected goal shortly after. Mikus found Richard Greenop at the left circle and he fired a shot on net. The puck deflected off of Jay Rosehill and it slipped past Toivonen to make it 3-1 at 5:51, ending Toivonen’s night. Alec Richards came in to replace Toivonen in net.
In the second period Kadri stick handled the puck by an IceHogs defender and fired from the right hash. The shot beat Richards glove side to make it 4-1 at 13:54. Mueller and Keith Aulie were credited with assists on the play.
Late in the third period, the Marlies put the IceHogs away when Mueller slid a puck under Richards pads in a scuffle around the net to make it 5-1 at 15:36 on the power play. Kadri and Matt Lashoff factored in on the play with the helper.
The IceHogs went 0-for-3 on the power play and the Marlies connected on two of their six power play attempts.
Richards came in to relieve Toivonen and made 24 saves on 26 shots. Scrivens turned away 34-of-35 Rockford chances to pick up the win.
Next Home Game: Friday, Jan. 7 vs. the Toronto Marlies. Game time is slated for 7:05 p.m. Rockford returns home for the first time in 2011 for their annual home tilt against Toronto. The game is the first of two on the campaign with the Marlies.