Rockford, Ill- In a back-and-forth affair, the Rockford IceHogs outdueled the Milwaukee Admirals in overtime, 4-3, in front of a sold out crowd at the Rockford MetroCentre on Saturday night.
Photo courtesy of Greg Hamil
With the IceHogs leading 3-2 midway through the final stanza Mike Bartlett knotted it up for Milwaukee. Ryan Flynn fed the puck to Bartlett and he tapped in his fifth goal of the season at 10:53 to eventually send the game into overtime.
In the extra session, the IceHogs took advantage of a Teemu Laakso penalty to send Milwaukee packing. Peter LeBlanc sent the puck to the blueline where Shawn Lalonde blasted one at the Milwaukee net. Ben Smith was amongst the crowd in front of the net and redirected the puck to light the lamp and give the IceHogs a 4-3 win.
It was Rockford getting on the board first to take a 1-0 lead as Evan Brophey sent his eighth goal of the season to the back of the net. Garnet Exelby fired a shot in on Anders Lindback and Brophey was there to clean up the rebound 42 seconds into the contest. Dylan Olsen also factored in on the play.
Midway through the opening frame, the Admirals responded on the power play to tie it up at 1-1. Aaron Johnson blasted a shot that slipped past Alec Richards and Kelsey Wilson shoveled it to the back of the net at 10:34. Laakso registered an assist on the play.
Then, the IceHogs regained the lead when Rob Klinkhammer finished a breakaway to make it 2-1 at 9:28 in the middle frame.
Milwaukee got the equalizer less than three minutes later. Positioned behind the net, Bartlett moved the puck out to Flynn in the right faceoff circle and he backhanded it past Richards at 12:27 in the second period to tie the game at 2-2.
Klinkhammer opened the third period with his second goal of the game to give Rockford a 3-2 lead. Lalonde dished the puck for Jeff Taffe to fire a shot on the Milwaukee net. Lindback knocked it down but left it on the door step and Klinkhammer flipped it in at 4:19 in the third period.
Richards picked up the win after stopping 33 shots. Linback was handed the loss turning away 26-of-30 attempts. Both power play units converted on one opportunity. Taffe's assist in the final frame extended his point streak to a league-long and IceHogs season-long 14 games.
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.