From: Patrick Armstrong
, Director of Communications
713.361.7920 (Direct Line)
, Communications Manager
713.361.7930 (Direct Line)
March 31, 2009
SPECIAL TEAMS PROPEL AEROS TO VICTORY
DES MOINES, Iowa –
The Houston Aeros regained sole possession of second place in the West Division with a 6-2 win over the Iowa Chops Tuesday night at Wells Fargo Arena. Houston scored five special-teams goals including three shorthanded goals for their 37th win of the season. Six different Aeros scored and Anton Khudobin
stopped 14 of 15 shots for his second win of the season. The Aeros and Chops will meet again Thursday night at Toyota Center for Chilly’s Pet Pals night, and fans are invited to bring their dogs to the game. Click here for more details
or call (713) 974-PUCK for tickets.
The Aeros scored their first of three shorthanded goals on a two-on-one chance with Morten Madsen
and Jason Ryznar
. Madsen carried the puck into the zone and tipped a pass over to Ryznar as he was falling to the ice. Ryznar buried the redirection attempt for his fourth goal of the season. The Aeros’ goal came at the 9:51 mark of the period, but Iowa quickly answered at the 11:08 mark when Troy Bodie
tipped a shot between the legs of Nolan Schaefer
to tie the game at one. Schaefer relieved himself from the game at the 16:21 mark after re-aggravating an injury, and Khudobin stepped in.
unlocked the 1-1 tie at the 8:56 mark of the second period when he intercepted a pass at his own blue line, skated in alone on Chops’ goaltender David LeNeveu
, and beat LeNeveu stick side with a wrist shot. Khudobin only allowed one goal for the rest of the game when the Chops tied the game at two 11:22 into the second period. Petteri Wirtanen
potted a shorthanded goal for the Chops on assists from T.J. Trevelyan
and Mark Mitera
. The Aeros regained the lead for good when Maxim Noreau
one-timed a shot past LeNeveu at the 17:40 mark of the second period. It marked the first of two power play goals for the Aeros and proved to be the game-winning goal.
Houston extended their lead on Tony Hrkac
’s first goal of the season at the 13:17 mark of the third period. Hrkac received a pass from Danny Irmen
on a two-on-one and lifted it over the right shoulder of LeNeveu for his first goal since the 2005 regular season. Less than two minutes later, the Aeros made it a 5-2 game on Corey Locke’
s 25th goal of the season. The five-on-three goal was assisted by Matt Beaudoin
and Tomas Mojzis
. Finally, at the 19:03 mark, Irmen scored an empty-net shorthanded goal for Houston to finalize the scoring at 6-2.
Irmen, Pouliot and Locke each recorded a goal and an assist in the win for Houston and the team regained sole possession of second place in the West Division with 84 points. Houston leads the Peoria Rivermen by two points and the Rockford IceHogs by four points with six games remaining in the regular season.
The Aeros magic number to make the playoffs is now six points. A combination of Houston wins and Chicago losses that adds up to six points will guarantee the Aeros their 13th playoff appearance in the team’s 15-year history. Houston is also looking for their seventh playoff appearance in eight seasons in the American Hockey League.
-- HOUSTON AEROS: 15 Seasons, One Reason --