Monsters Complete Opening Weekend Sweep With 3-1 Win Over 'Hogs

CLEVELAND – The AHL’s defending Calder Cup Champions, the Cleveland Monsters, proudly powered by Constellation, defeated the Rockford IceHogs on Saturday at Quicken Loans Arena by a final score of 3-1. With the win, the Monsters improved to 2-0 on the season and with a 1.000 points percentage, currently sit alone in first place in the AHL’s Central Division standings.

Cleveland wasted no time in grabbing the lead on Saturday, as Alex Broadhurst and Jaime Sifers combined to set up veteran right wing Aaron Palushaj for a slick backhand finish just 46 seconds into the game, staking the Monsters to a 1-0 lead.

In the second, a quick-witted play from T.J. Tynan at 6:20 resulted in a shorthanded finish to make it 2-0 Cleveland with Frank Hora collecting the lone assist on the play. Then, at 15:00 of the period, Justin Scott and Jordan Maletta combined to supply second-year winger Nick Moutrey with a brilliant set-up that the Toronto native converted for his first goal of the season, pushing Cleveland’s lead to 3-0. An unassisted Jeremy Langlois marker at 18:27 capped the scoring and pulled the IceHogs within a goal, but the Monsters clamped down for a 3-1 win and their second-consecutive victory over Rockford to start the 2016-17 campaign.

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Anton Forsberg improved to 2-0-0 in net for the Monsters by virtue of a 26-save performance, while Mac Carruth took the loss in net for the ‘Hogs despite stopping 19 of the 22 shots he faced. With Saturday’s win, the Monsters have now claimed victory in their last seven games vs. Rockford dating back to the 2015-16 regular season.

Next up for the Monsters, it’s a Saturday trip to Van Andel Arena in Grand Rapids, MI for the team’s first tilt of the season vs. the Grand Rapids Griffins with full coverage underway at 7:00 pm on 99X.

Tickets for every Monsters home game start at just $10 and are on sale now! Full and partial season ticket memberships are also available and provide you with the best seat locations, custom member benefits and the lowest ticket prices. 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, visiting The Q Box Office or any Northern Ohio Discount Drug Mart. Be sure to follow the Monsters on Twitter @monstershockey, on Facebook at www.facebook.com/clevelandmonsters, and on Instagram at www.instagram.com/monstershockey.