The Rockford IceHogs wrapped up the regular season in fine form, dispatching all three opponents to nab third place in the Central Division. Rockford picked up a road victory in Iowa before shutting out Grand Rapids and taking down Milwaukee at home to leapfrog the Griffins for the right to play the Lake Erie Monsters in the opening round of the Calder Cup Playoffs. The IceHogs had their best offensive performance of the season in their last game, and goaltender Mac Carruth stopped 77 shots en route to three consecutive victories.
Week 28 Results:
Wednesday, April 13: Rockford 2 at Iowa 1
Friday, April 15: Grand Rapids 0 vs. Rockford 4
Saturday, April 16: Milwaukee 1 vs. Rockford 7
- Rockford finished up the regular season in third place in the Central Division and will face the Lake Erie Monsters in the opening round of the Calder Cup playoffs
- Saturday’s crowd of 6,402 fans was the team’s record-setting 11th sellout and bumped the team average attendance over 5,000 per game for the first time in franchise history
- Mac Carruth stopped 77-of-79 shots and had one shutout en route to three consecutive wins
- Carruth set a personal season-best shutout streak by going 152:17 without allowing a goal
- Vince Hinostroza set the franchise rookie record for points in a season with 51 (18g-33a)
- Tanner Kero set a new team rookie mark with 20 goals in a season
- Defenseman Nick Mattson scored his first AHL goal on Saturday versus Grand Rapids, which stood as the game-winner
- Tyler Motte and Jonathan Carlsson both scored their first AHL game-winners on Wednesday and Saturday, respectively
- Overall, 20 different Hogs scored the winning goal this season, with Bryan Bickell’s four leading the way
- Vince Hinostroza scored the first goal on Saturday, which was his team-leading seventh first goal of the season
- Rockford’s power play scored in each game in Week 28, and matched a season-high with two power-play goals on Saturday
- he IceHogs have tallied on the man advantage in five-straight games, which is a season-long streak
- Saturday’s contest was the first time Rockford had scored twice on the power play since Feb. 14 against Grand Rapids
- Ville Pokka had three power-play points (1g-2a) to increase his team-leading season total to 24 (6g-18a)
- Rockford scored a season-high seven goals in the final game, besting the previous two-time high of six
- Seven different IceHogs players recorded multi-point games in Week 28, with Vince Hinostroza, Mark McNeill, and Ville Pokka doing so twice
- Mike Liambas led the league in major penalties with 20 and ranked second with 188 penalty minutes
- The IceHogs led the Central Division in team penalty minutes (1292)
- Rockford’s skaters finished with a +24 rating on Saturday, which set a team season-high
- The IceHogs won 40 games for the sixth time in nine seasons as an AHL club
- The team’s final three wins bumped their season record up to 33-17-10-4 against the Central Division
- Rockford went 21-5-3-3 at home against the Central; all 14 of its overtime and shootout losses were to divisional opponents
Hot Hog: Week 28
Goaltender Mac Carruth had a stellar week for the Rockford IceHogs, playing in all three games to help the team close the regular season with three victories and reach the 40-win plateau. Carruth allowed just two goals over the three games, including a shutout streak of 152:17. The three-game streak also set a season-high for consecutive wins for the 24-year-old netminder.
Wednesday, April 20 vs. Lake Erie Monsters: Game starts at 7 p.m. Rockford opens the Calder Cup Playoffs at home against Lake Erie. The IceHogs went 4-3-1-0 against Lake Erie during the regular season, and recorded a 4-0-0-0 record at home versus the Monsters. The IceHogs will give out rally towels to the first 2,500 fans courtesy of BMO Harris Bank.
Thursday, April 21 vs. Lake Erie Monsters: Contest begins at 7 p.m. The IceHogs play the second and final home game of the Central Division Semifinals when they host the Monsters in the back end of consecutive contests. The first 2,500 fans will get a rally towel thanks to BMO Harris Bank.
Saturday, April 23 at Lake Erie Monsters: Game starts at 6 p.m. Rockford heads to Cleveland to continue the opening round of the playoffs and look to get their first road win of the season against Lake Erie after going 0-3-1-0 at the Monsters during the regular season.