From: Robert Desimone
, Communications Manager
, Asst. Communications Manager
December 31, 2009
AEROS FINISH TRIP FRIDAY AT MILWAUKEE
ROCKFORD, IL - The Rockford IceHogs (19-16-2-1) erased a 4-2 deficit in the third period and scored on the power-play in overtime to defeat the Houston Aeros (17-15-3-1) 5-4 Thursday night in front of 3,676 at the Rockford Metro Centre. RW Jon DiSalvatore had two goals and an assist for the Aeros and G Anton Khudobin (9-10-1) made 29 saves in the loss. RW Jack Skille had a goal and two assists including the game-winning-goal in OT and G Joe Fallon (10-8-0) made 14 saves in the win.
The teams played to a scoreless first period and for the second time in as many nights the Aeros managed just four shots on goal. The second period had a flurry of scoring, beginning at the 2:37 mark when C Adam Hobson took advantage of a Khudobin turnover and gave Rockford a 1-0 lead. DiSalvatore answered for the Aeros on the power-play at 9:16 when he banged home a rebound off a shot by D Max Noreau; C Nathan Smith was also credited with an assist. Rockford took their second lead of the game just under three minutes later as C Jake Dowell beat Khudobin to take a 2-1 lead.
Houston responded again though, scoring three consecutive goals to take a 4-2 lead. At 13:35 of the second period DiSalvatore was on the receiving end of a fortunate bounce off a shot by C Andy Hilbert. His sharp angle shot from the goal line found its way in the net and the power-play marker ties him with RW J-M Daoust for the team lead in goals with 12. At 15:36 C Chad Rau gave the Aeros a 3-2 lead, deflecting a point shot by Noreau past Fallon. The goal gives him eight on the season and extends his point streak to three games (1-2=3).
Midway through the third period the Aeros extended their lead when Smith took advantage of a centering pass from LW Colton Gillies and beat Fallon at 8:40. It was Smith's fourth goal this season and first since November 15 vs. Chicago. It was also his first multi-point game of the season.
The IceHogs began their comeback 10:00 into the third period as D Mike Brennan scored his first goal of the season to cut the deficit in half. The Aeros were then whistled for back-to-back penalties at 13:57 and 14:33, giving Rockford a 5-on-3 advantage. C Mark Cullen scored at 15:21 when he fired a wrist shot over the glove hand of Khudobin and tied the game 4-4.
The teams headed to overtime where Rockford was given their ninth power-play of the game when Daoust was whistled for tripping. The IceHogs gained control after Smith broke his stick on the faceoff and Skille received a back-door pass from Cullen to set up the game-winning-goal at 1:13.
Rockford out-shot the Aeros 34-18 on the night and finished 2-for-9 on the power-play while the Aeros were 2-for-2. Houston falls to 9-1-1-0 when leading after two periods this season. It is also the first time the Aeros have given up five goals in back-to-back games since October 25 and 26 of last season. The Aeros lost 5-3 at Manitoba followed by a 5-4 loss at Toronto.
The Aeros finish the three-game road trip tomorrow in Milwaukee, 7:00 PM at the Bradley Center. Houston returns home Sunday to host Abbotsford, 4:05 PM at Toyota Center. Watch the games on ahllive.com or listen on 1070 AM-KNTH. Follow the in-game blog at aeros.com.
Jon O'Donnell Calls of the Game:
DiSalvatore Second PPG
-- HOUSTON AEROS --
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