The Rockford IceHogs got off to another fast start thanks to the Sikura brothers, but the Cleveland Monsters scored five straight goals to overcome the early deficit en route to a 5-2 defeat of the IceHogs Saturday afternoon at Quicken Loans Arena.
The IceHogs dropped both contests of their season-opening back-to-back series in Cleveland, falling to 0-2-0-0.
The Sikuras struck first for Rockford, as Tyler Sikura redirected a centering pass from Dylan Sikura for a power-play-goal at the 13:53 mark of the first period. Before Friday’s season-opener, the two had not played organized hockey together since high school, making this the first time the brothers have connected for a goal in their professional careers.
Cleveland’s Eric Robinson answered just 27 seconds later, and the Monsters never looked back. Zac Dalpe gave the Monsters the lead just over a minute after Robinson’s tally, then Robinson scored his second of the game with only 9 seconds remaining in the first.
Kole Sherwood and Dalpe added to the Cleveland lead in the second frame, giving the Monsters a four goal cushion heading into the third.
Lucas Carlsson provided a response for the IceHogs with his first career AHL goal 7:50 into the third period, but Cleveland held on for the 5-2 victory.
The IceHogs will look to secure their first win of the season in the home-opener against their playoff nemesis, the Texas Stars next Saturday at the BMO Harris Bank Center.
NEXT HOME GAME: Saturday, Oct. 13 vs. Texas Stars | 6 p.m.
The Rockford IceHogs will host their home opener for the 2018-19 season on Saturday, Oct. 13 against the Texas Stars at 6 p.m. at the BMO Harris Bank Center. The first 4,000 fans in attendance to Rockford’s first home game of the campaign will receive a free IceHogs calendar, courtesy of Impact Networking. Call the IceHogs front office at (815) 968-5222 or visit icehogs.com to purchase tickets.