Monsters Finish Road Trip with 5-2 Loss in Rockford
Three third period goals carried the Rockford IceHogs (4-2-0-1) to victory Sunday, as they topped the Lake Erie Monsters (2-4-0-1) by a 5-2 score. Max Noreau and Andrew Agozzino scored in the loss for the Monsters, while Calvin Pickard started in net for the second consecutive game. The Monsters finish their five-game road trip with a 1-3-0-1 record, and head home to host Texas on Friday at 7:30 p.m. at Quicken Loans Arena.
Adam Clendening scored the game's first goal, giving Rockford a 1-0 lead at 14:50 of the first period. He cruised up the left side of the ice, and sent a high wrist shot past Monsters goalie Calvin Pickard, with former Monster Kyle Cumiskey registering an assist on the play. Rockford extended its lead to 2-0 when Dennis Rasmussen took a centering feed from Ryan Hartman, and slipped a shot past Pickard at 9:32 of the second period.
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The Monsters answered back to force a tie heading into the second intermission. The first Monsters goal came as Max Noreau was denied on an opportunity from the slot, but Noreau collected his own rebound and put the puck just inches past the goal line to get the Monsters on the scoreboard. The goal was the second of the season for Noreau, and was assisted by Trevor Cheek and Karl Stollery at 14:41 of the second period.
Just 2:07 later, the Monsters tied the game at 2-2. IceHogs goalie Michael Leighton misplayed a puck behind the net with Rockford on the power play, and Leighton turned the puck over to Andrew Agozzino. Agozzino was able to move to the side of the net and score before Leighton could get back into position. The unassisted goal was Agozzino's second of the season, and the Monsters first shorthanded goal of the campaign.
Rockford's three-goal third period secured their victory, and the eventual game-winning goal started the third period scoring for the IceHogs. Matt Carey netted the difference-maker on a wrist shot from the top of the right circle at 2:51 of the final period. Ryan Hartman extended Rockford's lead to 4-2 with 7:00 left in the third period, and Mark McNeill scored an empty-net goal in the final minute to give Rockford the 5-2 edge.
Pickard stopped 26 of 30 shots in the loss; he is 1-2-1 on the season. Leighton is 2-2-1 after the win for Rockford; he stopped 21 of 23 shots.
The Monsters return to Quicken Loans Arena to host the Texas Stars Friday at 7:30 p.m. and Saturday at 6:00 p.m.
NOTES: The Monsters finished their three-in-three weekend with a 1-1-1 record, earning three of six points on the weekend road trip... The Monsters are 0-1-0-0 against Rockford on the season, and will meet the IceHogs eight times overall on the season... The Monsters first seven games of the season have all been against Midwest Division foes... Dennis Everberg's three-game point streak was halted Sunday... Agozzino's goal was his 39th as a Monster, vaulting him into a tie with T.J. Hensick and Matt Ford for fourth all-time on the Monsters goal scoring chart... The Monsters did not have a power play in the game, and were 4-4 on the penalty kill... Follow the Monsters on Twitter @monstershockey, on Facebook at www.facebook.com/lakeeriemonsters, and on Instagram at www.instagram.com/monstershockey.