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Heat fall 4-1 to Rivermen on Friday

by Staff Writer / Calgary Flames

PEORIA, IL -- The Abbotsford Heat lost 4-1 to the Peoria Rivermen (AHL affiliate of the St. Louis Blues) on Friday night, in the first of three road games in three days.

The Rivermen deflected three pucks past Danny Taylor in his first start since returning from the Calgary Flames, to hand the Heat their second loss of a five game road trip. Ben Walter’s power play goal which tied the game in the second period turned out to be the only Heat goal in the loss.

The Rivermen scored just 2:15 into the game on Cody Beach’s second goal of the season, assisted by Sergey Andronov and Adam Cracknell. The Rivermen led 1-0 after 20 minutes.

Walter tied the game 1-1 with a five-on-three power play goal at 9:59 of the second period. Brett Carson and Krys Kolanos drew assists on Walter’s ninth goal of the season.

The Rivermen took a 2-1 lead at 12:32 of the second period with an even-strength goal and added a power play goal just four minutes later to go ahead 3-1 after 40 minutes.

Abbotsford pulled their goalie for an extra attacker in the final 90 seconds of play, but the Rivermen scored into the empty net with 8.8 second remaining in regulation.

Taylor made his first start since he cleared waivers and was assigned to the Heat on Wednesday. The 26-year-old made 30 saves on 33 shots in the game, culminating in his eighth regulation loss of the season. The Rivermen outshot the Heat 34-25 to earn their second win against the Heat in this the fourth and final game of their season series.

The Heat scored once on four power play attempts, while the penalty kill allowed one goal on the only Peoria man advantage.

The Heat will face the Rockford IceHogs (AHL affiliate of the Chicago Blackhawks) tomorrow with a 5:00 pm PST puck drop. Abbotsford will return to Milwaukee on Sunday for their final game against the Admirals to close out three games in three days. Abbotsford’s 12-day road trip concludes on Wednesday February 20th with their eighth and final meeting of the season with the Chicago Wolves at the Allstate Arena.

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