12/27/2009 5:40 PM
By: Chris Etheridge
Rosemont, Ill.- The Rockford IceHogs posted six goals on Sunday to give them their first win at the Allstate Arena since Jan. 2, 2009, beating the Chicago Wolves 6-4.
The teams traded short-handed goals in the first period. Chicago's Spencer Machacek picked off Mark Cullen in the Rockford zone, drove on Joe Fallon and slipped it under the netminder at 11:03 with Rockford on the power play. It was the second time in as many games that the IceHogs have given up a short-handed goal.
But then the Hogs took advantage of a Chicago line change to even the score. Defenseman Brian Connelly found Bracken Kearns wide open sneaking across the blue line. Kearns then pushed the puck up to Jack Skille all alone near the net and he punched it past Drew MacIntyre at 18:28.
And with just 13 seconds left in the period, a Jassen Cullimore blast from the blue line slipped under MacIntyre to give Rockford the lead heading into the locker room. Connelly and Pete MacArthur picked up assists on the play.
Chicago's Tim Stapleton tied the game at two when he picked up his own rebound and poked it past the goal line at 5:56 in the second period. Joey Crabb and Matt Anderson had the helpers.
And Machacek gave Chicago the lead again when he beat Fallon glove-side at 10:51 with an assist from Arturs Kulda.
Daryl Boyle picked up a pass from Rob Klinkhammer and drove it over MacIntyre's left shoulder to even the score again at 16:22. MacArthur also had a helper.
But then the IceHogs took control in the third period. Skille lit the lamp for his second of the game at 2:32 with another assist from Kearns and then Cullen added some insurance when he wrapped around the net and bounced the puck off MacIntyre and into the goal at 7:22. Klinkhammer picked up his second assist of the night on the goal.
Then Evan Brophey gave Rockford a 6-3 lead when he pushed the puck into the open net unassisted at 18:58.
Riley Holzapfel brought Rockford's lead back within two on the power play at 19:57, but the comeback came too late.
Fallon stopped 33 in the win while MacIntyre had 24 saves. Rockford's power play continued to struggle, finishing 0-for-5 while Chicago's only advantage goal came on their third attempt.
Next Home Game: Thursday, Dec. 31 vs. Houston Aeros: Game time is 7:05 p.m. Celebrate the New Year as the Rockford IceHogs take on the Houston Aeros for the first time at the Rockford MetroCentre. The IceHogs will be giving away five pairs of Chicago Blackhawks suite tickets to the Blackhawks game on Sunday, Jan. 10 at the United Center. Don’t forget your skates as the IceHogs will host a postgame skate on the MetroCentre’s ice and fans can watch the ball drop from New York City at 11 p.m. on the big screen.