Photo by Jason Villanueva
Center nets a pair of goals in 3-1 win
Houston, Tex.- After an offensively challenging homestand, the Rockford IceHogs went on the road and found a bit of an offensive groove. Mark Cullen tallied twice to lead the IceHogs to a 3-1 win over the Houston Aeros at the Toyota Center.
After getting blanked in three of their previous five games, Rockford wasted little time getting on the board Tuesday. Mark Cullen knocked in his 18th goal of the season just 2:55 into the contest when Matt Keith set him up from behind the Aeros goal.
Then while shorthanded, Jack Skille jammed in his own rebound past Darcy Kuemper for his 22nd marker of the campaign at 14:07 giving Rockford a 2-0 lead. The shortie was set up by Bracken Kearns and Richard Petiot.
In the second frame the Aeros grabbed the only marker and it came in the period’s final minute. J.M. Daoust worked a puck around Corey Crawford at 19:22 for his 22nd goal of the campaign, helped by Duncan Milroy and cutting Rockford’s lead down to 2-1.
Cullen would seal the contest for Rockford in the third period when he buried his second goal of the night. The Hogs leading point getter picked up a Keith pass and shelved his 19th goal of the season from between the circles and over the shoulder of Kuemper making it 3-1. Pete MacArthur assisted both of Cullen’s goals as well.
Crawford would do the rest, including turning away all 12 third period shots by the Aeros. The Hogs puckstopper earned his 23rd win of the season while the rookie Kuemper was saddled with his first professional loss making 14 saves for the Aeros.
Playoff Tickets: Tickets for the first two possible home Calder Cup Playoff games for the Rockford IceHogs are now on sale. Tickets can be purchased at the MetroCentre Box Office, metrocentre.com or by calling (815) 968-5222.