From: Patrick Armstrong
, Director of Communications
713.361.7920 (Direct Line)Scott Henninger
, Communications Manager
713.361.7930 (Direct Line)
Sunday, April 6, 2008
HOUSTON CLINCHES PLAYOFFS AS THEY SINK RIVERMEN 5-0
PEORIA, Ill. –
The Houston Aeros
ensured a visit to the 2008 Calder Cup Playoffs as they eliminated the Peoria Rivermen from contension with a 5-0 victory Sunday afternoon in front of 4,070 fans at Carver Arena. Milan Gajic
earned the team’s first hat trick of the season as Nolan Schaefer
backstopped the club to their 11th shutout. Houston (43-27-2-4) will make their sixth post-season appearance in seven AHL seasons. Peoria’s (36-31-4-5) loss also clinched playoff berths for San Antonio and Milwaukee to round out the West Division representation in the playoffs. Box Score
The Aeros streaked out to an early lead with Gajic recording a pair of goals at 4:28 and 10:52 in first period. Colton Gillies
recorded the lone assist on each of the goals for his first multiple point game of his professional career. Jon Awe
finished the scoring in the early frame with a power-play marker at 17:54 with John Adams
and Morten Madsen
earning the assists. Houston out-shot the Rivermen 8-6 and converted on their first man-advantage opportunity.
As Houston began the second period on a power-play that carried over from the first frame Gajic recorded the team’s first hat trick of the season by scoring his third goal of the afternoon only 31 seconds in. Peter Olvecky
and Maxim Noreau
earned the assists on the goal putting the Aeros up 4-0 on the only goal in the second period. Peoria tied the shots total at 16 each prior to heading into the locker rooms for the second intermission.
Again, the Aeros recorded the only goal of the period as Awe tallied the first multiple-goal game of his AHL career at 6:30 in the third. Brandon Rogers and Olvecky earned the assists on the game’s final marker. After all was said and done Schaefer stopped all 22 shots faced with opposing goaltender Chris Beckford-Tseu knocking aside 26 of 31 shots.
Houston Aeros' Calder Cup Playoff tickets for groups are already available by calling the Aeros front office at 713.974.PUCK. Click here
to see what playoff packages are available. Dates, times, locations and opponents for the Aeros in the Calder Cup Playoffs will be determined following the conclusion of the regular season. Stay tuned to AEROS.com for updates as they happen.
Houston has just four games left in the regular season and will face the Milwaukee Admirals for three games in three nights to cap off the regular season next weekend. The final two games
on Houston’s schedule are at Toyota Center on April 12th and 13th. The games could determine playoff seeding so you don't want to miss the action!Saturday, April 12-
The first 3,000 fans will receive Houston Aeros Thuderstix! Aeros Spring Four Packs are available starting at just $44. Sunday, April 13
- The last Aeros Family Day. Get four tickets, four Aeros gifts, $20 in Toyota Bucks and free parking, all starting at just $67. As an added bonus the first 3,000 fans receive Houston Aeros Rally Towels!
All of these offers are exclusive to the Aeros front office and can be purchased by calling (713) 974-PUCK.Notes:
- The win clinched a Calder Cup Playoff berth for the Houston Aeros. This will mark the sixth appearance in seven seasons in the AHL. The post-season appearance is also the 12th in the franchises 14 season history.
- Milan Gajic
’s hat trick is the first for the Aeros this season and the first of his professional career.
- Jon Awe
recorded two goals for his first multiple goal game of his professional career.
- The shutout marked the 11th for the Aeros this season, improving the club’s record for shutouts in a season. The shutout also marked Nolan Schaefer
’s sixth of the season also improving his personal record for shutouts in a season. Schaefer had recorded three in 2004-05 with the Cleveland Barons and three in 2005-06 split between the Barons and San Jose of the NHL.
- The Aeros current 92 points is a 28 point improvement over last year’s 64. This marks the largest single season improvement since joining the AHL. The team recorded a 30 point improvement between the 1995-96 and 96-97 seasons while in the IHL.
- Houston’s three-goal first period was the first time in 35 games the club has recorded that many markers in the opening period. The last time the Aeros had done so was on January 12 at Manitoba in a 4-1 win.
- The Aeros recorded three power-play goals in the game, the most since tying a franchise record with five on February 8 in Rockford during a 6-1 victory.-- HOUSTON AEROS --