When IceHogs took to the ice last night in Rockford, they had two huge obstacles to overcome. The first was facing the Milwaukee Admirals for the first time since their post season playoff losses to them, 4-0. The second obstacle was that the IceHogs were fresh off a embarrassing loss on Wednesday to Peoria. The desire to win was burning brightly in their minds.
Rockford's Evan Brophy, assisted by Mike Brennan, was the first to light up Milwaukee's net minder Mark Dekanich at 10:04 into the 1st frame. Jack Skille, Rockford, was next in line to score, assisted by Kyle Greentree and Mark Cullen. Skille was recently reassigned this week again to Rockford by the Chicago Blackhawks. It's become very hard to keep track of his movements this season so far, as Chicago was recalling & reassigning him every other day it seemed.
IceHogs' Danny Bois opened the 2nd period, scoring at 2:11, with assists going to Rob Klinkhammer and Evan Brophy. Milwaukee was not able to answer back until 6:11 of that frame. Mark Santorelli, assisted by Peter Olivecky and Jonathon Blum. The Admirals pelleted Rockford with 16 shots on goal that frame alone, but Corey Crawford was stellar in net.
Rockford went onto score 3 more goals in the 3rd frame, defeating the 2008/09 Western Division Conference Champions. They were able to prove to both themselves and the 3926 fans in the stands, that they could indeed overcome those obstacles in their way. Corey Crawford was awarded the game's 1st Star, but it was Mark Cullen, of Rockford, who went onto to win the AHL's 3rd Star of the Night on Friday.
On a side note, Rockford's David Phillips succeeded in winning his very first AHL fight ever, against Milwaukee's Ian McKenzie. McKenzie out sized Phillips by 2 inches and 56 pounds. Phillips, a native of the UK, is playing his very first season in North America with the AHL. Phillips had taken offense to McKenzie's actions towards his teammate & goalie, Corey Crawford. Welcome to North America David!