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By: Mike Peck
Photo by Ben Hall
Monsters score 11-seconds into OT to earn the win

Cleveland, Ohio-
Penalty trouble again sunk the Rockford IceHogs on Friday night as they dropped a 3-2 overtime decision to the Lake Erie Monsters at the Quicken Loans Arena.

In the overtime Lake Erie started with a 5-on-3 power play and it didn’t take them long to finish off the IceHogs. Just 11-seconds into the OT, Matt Ford picked up a Julien Brouillette rebound and dumped in his second goal of the night for the win.

Rockford’s last six games that have gone past regulation have all finished in the overtime and the IceHogs are 2-4 in those contests. Rockford hasn’t participated in a shootout since Dec. 10.

Rockford jumped out front with a goal in transition from Garnet Exelby. Filling the left lane, Exelby picked up a Mathis Olimb feed and beat Jason Bacashihua over the glove shoulder for his second goal of the campaign at 2:17 of the first period.

Lake Erie tied the game with a transition goal of their own in the second period. Ford redirected a Mark Olver centering pass underneath Hannu Toivonen at 1:14 for his 19th marker of the year.

The IceHogs came right back on the power play though to retake the lead. Rob Klinkhammer fed Ben Smith in the slot and the rookie winger slipped his tenth goal of the campaign under Bacashiihua at 3:18 of the middle frame.

In the third period Lake Erie grabbed the equalizer while skating on the power play. Olver picked up a rebound on the backhand and beat Toivonen through traffic for his team best 23rd goal of the season at 4:13 of the third frame.

Toivonen was solid in goal for Rockford, making 33 saves in the OT loss. Bacashihua turned away 30 Rockford shots in the win.

Next Home Game: Sunday, March 13, vs. Chicago Wolves. Puck drop is at 4:05 p.m. It’s the IceHogs 12th  Annual Jersey Auction game. The Hogs will be wearing special jerseys commemorating first responders. After the game, the jerseys will be auctioned off to fans. Also, the first 2,500 fans to the game will receive a Jersey Auction T-Shirt compliments of WXRX.

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