Hogs Run Wild
GRAND RAPIDS GRIFFINS 1 at Rockford IceHogs 5
March 19, 2022
ROCKFORD, Ill. - Rockford’s three-goal middle frame lifted the IceHogs past the Grand Rapids Griffins 5-1 on Saturday at the BMO Harris Bank Center. Grand Rapids suffered just its second lost in seven games against Rockford this season (5-2-0-0).
The Griffins avoided a shutout when Tyler Spezia notched his 13th goal of the campaign in the third period. Dominik Shine extended his point streak (2-2—4) to three games with a helper. Turner Elson saw his career-high five-game goal streak come to an end.
Rockford broke the scoreless tie at 16:26 in the opening frame. During a 4-on-4, Brett Connolly gathered the puck and ripped a shot into the left corner after Lukas Reichel’s attempt was deflected by Calvin Pickard’s stick.
The IceHogs extended their lead to four, scoring a total of three goals on 16 shots in the second period. With 16:12 remaining, Josiah Slavin on a break fired an angled shot that went past Pickard’s glove.
At 7:22, Andrei Altybarmakian in the slot took an initial shot but was saved by Pickard. At the right post, Michal Teply corralled the rebound and placed the disc into the right corner.
On its fourth power play, Rockford took a 4-0 lead when Ian Mitchell from the left circle fired a one-timer past the glove of Pickard with 10:46 remaining in the middle frame.
Slavin notched his second tally of the game at 3:47 in the final stanza when he fought off his defender and backhanded the puck past the netminder, giving the IceHogs a 5-0 advantage.
Grand Rapids got on the board with 9:26 remaining in the contest. Spezia skated toward the right wing and sent a wrister in the left corner.
The Griffins had two power-play opportunities late in the contest but failed to convert, thus giving Rockford the 5-1 victory.
Dan Renouf skated in his 350th game as a professional.
Both Luke Witkowski and Jonatan Berggren returned to the lineup after missing multiple contests.
Pickard’s three-game win streak ended.
Grand Rapids 0 0 1 - 1
Rockford 1 3 1 - 5
1st Period-1, Rockford, Connolly 9 (Reichel, Phillips), 16:26. Penalties-Ghafari Gr (tripping), 4:23; Gabriel Rfd (holding), 8:39; Ghafari Gr (kneeing, fighting), 15:31; Busdeker Rfd (instigating, fighting, misconduct - instigating), 15:31; Renouf Gr (holding), 19:31.
2nd Period-2, Rockford, Slavin 9 (Galvas, Hardman), 3:48. 3, Rockford, Teply 10 (Altybarmakian, I. Mitchell), 7:22. 4, Rockford, I. Mitchell 9 (Regula, Hardman), 9:14 (PP). Penalties-Regula Rfd (tripping), 4:32; Ghafari Gr (boarding), 8:00; Sebrango Gr (cross-checking), 12:54; Pour Rfd (slashing), 15:22; Gabriel Rfd (tripping), 20:00.
3rd Period-5, Rockford, Slavin 10 (Johnson), 3:47. 6, Grand Rapids, Spezia 13 (Shine, McIsaac), 10:34. Penalties-Connolly Rfd (tripping), 11:00; Altybarmakian Rfd (slashing), 14:08.
Shots on Goal-Grand Rapids 9-8-13-30. Rockford 9-16-11-36.
Power Play Opportunities-Grand Rapids 0 / 6; Rockford 1 / 4.
Goalies-Grand Rapids, Pickard 21-15-5 (36 shots-31 saves). Rockford, Soderblom 12-10-1 (30 shots-29 saves).
1. RFD Slavin (two goals); 2. RFD Mitchell (power-play goal, assist); 3. RFD Mike Hardman (two assists)
Record / Next Game
Grand Rapids: 26-25-5-2 (59 pts.) / Tues., March 22 at Ontario 10 p.m. EDT
Rockford: 25-23-3-1 (54 pts.) / Sun., March 20 vs. Manitoba 7 p.m. CDT
Photo by Todd Reicher/Rockford IceHogs