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By: Mike Peck
Photo by Sievers Photography

Rockford picks up point in the extra session

Peoria, Ill.-  Twice the Rockford IceHogs dug themselves into two, two-goal deficits against the Peoria Rivermen on Friday night, but were able to scratch out a point after eventually falling 5-4 in the shootout at Carver Arena.

Trailing 4-2 entering the third period, Rockford battled back to force overtime and an eventual shootout.  Defenseman Jordan Hendry put the comeback in motion when he knocked in his first goal of the season off of a Jake Dowell feed at 4:58 of the final frame.  Winger Dan Bertram chipped in his first professional point with an assist on the goal.

Then Pascal Pelletier, coming off of a four-goal performance on Wednesday, would tie the game at four when he finished a give-and-go with Tim Brent at 14:40 for his team leading 12 goal of the season.  Rockford outshot Peoria 17-3 in the third period.

After a scoreless overtime, the IceHogs found themselves in their sixth shootout of the season. In the shootout Peoria outscored Rockford 3-2, including two goals from Nikolay Lemtyugov, to skate away with the extra point after six rounds. 

The first period has been the stingiest for the IceHogs all season long, but on Friday night Peoria would strike twice in the opening frame.  Defenseman Jonas Junland fired in his third goal of the season past Antti Niemi on a five-on-three power play at 9:07.  The goal was set up by Julian Talbot and Lemtyugov.

Peoria extended the lead to 2-0 at 11:15 after Ross Carlson beat Niemi for his first goal of the campaign.  Andy Wozniewski added an assist.  The two goals allowed marked the first time this season in which Rockford gave up two goals in the first period.

The IceHogs fought back, however, to tie the game at two heading into the intermission.  Center Petri Kontiola potted his seventh goal of the season at 12:05 after Pete MacArthur set him up on the doorstep at 12:05.  Mike Radja also helped with an assist.

MacArthur than tied the game with his first career AHL goal at 13:27 on the power play.  Center Nathan Davis dumped the puck into the Peoria zone and a funny bounce off the glass found MacArthur and he disposed it into the open net. 

More special team’s goals in the second period gave Peoria the advantage after two.  Winger Ryan Reaves deflected a Junland blast past Niemi at 12:45 to put the Rivermen back on top.  Josh Soares then pushed Peoria’s advantage back to two goals when he beat Niemi on the power play for his first goal of the season at 10:58 and a 4-2 lead.

Rockford outshot Peoria 39-28 in the game and the IceHogs league-leading power play went 1-5. 

Next Home Game: Saturday, Nov. 29 vs. Peoria Rivermen: The game starts at 7:05 p.m. The Hogs and Rivermen wrap up a home-and-home series at the Rockford MetroCentre. The IceHogs along with Dental Dimensions and KTEL Construction welcome Jennette McCurdy, co-star of the Nickelodeon hit show iCarly to the MetroCentre. Jennette will sign autographs during the game.

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