11/26/2008 8:14 PM
Pelletier's hat trick is second in Rockford AHL history and 42nd in last ten years
Rockford, Ill. - Pascal Pelletier posted four goals in the Rockford IceHogs 6-1 feast of the San Antonio Rampage on the eve of Thanksgiving Day at the Rockford MetroCentre. The four goal performance is the third all-time in Rockford history, but first in the AHL era.
Pelletier recorded his first hat trick since Feb. 19, 2006 as a member of the Providence Bruins and second in the pro ranks. The winger's first goal came at 2:18 in the first when Pelletier knocked the puck past the left glove of Rampage goaltender Josh Tordjman. Assists came from Jack Skille and Niklas Hjalmarsson.
'It was a good night," Pelletier said. "It's always nice when the puck goes into the net."
Pelletier then netted his second goal of the night at 4:42 on the power play in the first to give the Hogs a 2-0 lead. The marker was assisted by Petri Kontiola and Tim Brent.
"If we can get on the power play real fast, we can do a lot of damage," Pelletier said. "We have a good power play here and if you want to get on the power play, you have to skate and play deep in their end. I think that's what we did tonight."
The Quebec City native's third goal came at 10:42 in the first for Rockford's first natural hat trick since Dave Paradise recorded one on April 1, 2004 at Port Huron in the United Hockey League. Skille and Brent again helped with the goal, giving Brent his first even-strength point of the season.
"It's fun," Pelletier said. "Last year I had six or seven games with two goals, but I just couldn't finish it was really nice tonight to make it. It's fun to score three goals, but really it's more important to win. We wanted to get out of the gate early and we did."
The lone Rampage goal was sent past Rockford netminder Corey Crawford by winger Jeff Hoggan at 18:39 in the first frame. Crawford finished the game with 26 saves. Trodjman ended the day with 24 saves as the Rampage fell to a team record 0-11-0-0 in the last 11 games and 0-14-0-1 in the last fifteen.
The Rampage were 1-for-5 on the power play, while the IceHogs went 2-for-5 on the man advantage.
Andrew Archer upped the score to 4-1 at 1:39 in the third frame on a floater that flew past Tordjman. The assists were given to Evan Brophey and Danny Groulx. It's Archer's third goal in six professional seasons.
And Pelletier could not stay quiet much longer, cashing in his fourth goal of the night at 2:31 in the third. With helpers from Kontiola and Groulx, Pelletier netted his 11th goal of the 2008-09 season to lead the IceHogs.
Groulx's two assists give him 100 points in the AHL in seven pro seasons.
Mike Radja also got a piece of the action scoring his second goal of the season at 16:17 in the third frame. Jake Dowell and Kontiola got the assists.
Next Game: Friday, Nov. 28 at Peoria Rivermen: Game time for 7 p.m. Rockford returns to Peoria for the front end of a home-and-home series against the Rivermen at Carver Arena. The game is the fourth of five in November between the teams.
Next Home Game: Saturday, Nov. 29 vs. Peoria Rivermen: The game starts at 7:05 p.m. The Hogs and Rivermen wrap up a home-and-home series at the Rockford MetroCentre. The IceHogs along with Dental Dimensions and KTEL Construction welcome Jennette McCurdy, co-star of the Nickelodeon hit show iCarly to the MetroCentre. Jennette will sign autographs during the game.