Monsters Cruise Past IceHogs in Home Opener, 4-1
Stenlund and Robinson pick-up first AHL goals; Berube stops 24 of 25 shots
The Cleveland Monsters, American Hockey League affiliate of the NHL’s Columbus Blue Jackets, picked up their first win of the season on Friday night, defeating the Rockford IceHogs by a final score of 4-1 in front of 10,775 fans at The Q. With the win, the Monsters improve to 1-0-0-0 overall, tied for first place in the Eastern Conference’s North Division.
Rockford grabbed an early 1-0 lead Friday night when Matthew Highmore potted his first goal of the season at 17:11 of the opening frame on feeds from Victor Ejdsell and Luc Snuggerud.
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In the middle stanza, Cleveland leveled the score at one with an even-strength Eric Robinson tally, his first professional goal at 1:58 of the second period thanks to Zac Dalpe’s lone assist.
In the third, Kevin Stenlund notched his first career AHL goal, an even-strength marker, assisted by Nathan Gerbe, at 3:26 of the period to give Cleveland a 2-1 lead. The Monsters pushed their lead to 3-1 on an even-strength tally from Vitaly Abramov at 15:14 of the final frame with assists from Michael Prapavessis and Dillon Simpson. Justin Scott closed the scoring with an empty-net goal at 17:07 to seal a Monsters opening night victory, 4-1.
Cleveland net-minder Jean-Francois Berube stopped 24 of the 25 shots faced Friday night to improve to 1-0-0, while IceHogs backstop Kevin Lankinen stopped 18 of 21 pucks to drop the IceHogs to 0-1-0.
Next up for the Monsters, it’s a Saturday home clash vs. the Rockford IceHogs with full coverage, live from The Q, underway at 1:00 pm on Alt 99.1 and the Monsters Hockey Network.
2018-19 Monsters Hockey Club Memberships, providing fans the ability to lock in the lowest ticket prices, the best seat locations to each game, custom member benefits and an exclusive Monsters jersey, are now available! Group outing and birthday bash packages for 10 or more people are also on sale now. All tickets can be purchased by visiting ClevelandMonsters.com, calling (216) 420-0000 or any Northern Ohio Discount Drug Mart. Be sure to follow the Monsters on Twitter @monstershockey, on Facebook at www.facebook.com/monstershockey, and on Instagram @monstershockey.