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RIVERMEN PADDLE PAST GRIFFINS IN THIRD PERIOD

Dec. 17, 2010 – Peoria Rivermen 5 at GRAND RAPIDS GRIFFINS 2

GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. – Peoria blew open a tight 2-1 game by scoring three times in the final 10:28 on Friday, as the Rivermen extended their point streak to 11 games with a 5-2 win over the Grand Rapids Griffins at Van Andel Arena.

Within four minutes of Francis Pare scoring his second goal of the night to pull the Griffins to within 3-2, Peoria tallied twice to improve to 9-0-2-0 in its last 11 outings, including three wins against Grand Rapids.

The Griffins (13-13-1-4) will get another shot at the Rivermen (18-7-2-1) on Saturday, as they travel to Peoria for an 8:05 p.m. EST faceoff at Carver Arena.

Pare solved Jake Allen, the AHL’s top ranked netminder, with a beautiful goal at the 8:50 mark of the opening period. After Jordan Owens sent a long feed up the right boards, he chased down the puck at the top of the circle, took a few strides toward the net and ripped a shot over Allen’s glove into the top corner of the cage.

Just 1:36 into the second, the Rivermen took advantage of a sprawled Thomas McCollum to tie the score, with Adam Cracknell feeding Anthony Peluso for an easy tap into an open net from the top of the crease. Peoria then grabbed the lead at 15:59 following a Grand Rapids giveaway in the left corner, as T.J. Hensick skated out with the puck toward the slot and blistered a shot into the far corner of the goal.

The Rivermen extended their cushion to 3-1 midway through the third. Derek Nesbitt sped down the right side, crossed the Griffins’ blue line and unleashed a low slap shot that slipped inside the left post at 9:32.

Pare notched goal number two on a rebound during a power play at 13:28 to again make it a one-goal deficit, but Peluso answered with his second just 2:06 later before Dean Arsene’s long-range wrister redirected past McCollum with three minutes left to extinguish the Griffins’ hopes for a comeback.

Allen improved to 10-2 by making 26 saves, while McCollum turned aside 18 shots in defeat.

Three Stars: 1. PEO Peluso (two goals); 2. GR Pare (two goals); 3. PEO Allen (W, 26 saves)
 

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