ROCKFORD, IL -- The Abbotsford Heat lost 7-2 to the Rockford IceHogs (AHL affiliate of the Chicago Blackhawks) at the BMO Harris Bank Centre on Saturday night.
The IceHogs scored five first period goals to put the game out of reach early. Ben Walter had a goal and an assist in the Heat loss. Brandon Pirri scored twice for the IceHogs while Ben Youds, Adam Clendening, Jeremy Morin and Terry Broadhurst also had two-point games in front of 4,779 fans in Rockford. The loss extends the Heat losing streak to three games and snaps a two-game winless streak for the IceHogs.
Rockford scored five goals in a span of nine minutes and 37 seconds between 6:03 and 15:40 of the first period. After 20 minutes of play the IceHogs were ahead 5-0 on two power play goals, a pair of even strength goals and a short-handed goal.
Walter scored his tenth goal of the season at 11:28 of the second period to cut the Rockford lead to four goals. Tyler Ruegsegger and Joe Callahan earned assists on Walter’s power play goal. The IceHogs responded with their third power play goal of the night, and led 6-1 through 40 minutes.
Krys Kolanos’ twelfth goal of the season, scored just 55 seconds into the third period, cut the IceHogs lead to 6-2. The goal was assisted by Ben Walter and Ryan Howse. The IceHogs added a seventh goal with 8:40 remaining to finish the game 7-2.
Barry Brust made his 23rd appearance of the season and made 31 saves on 38 shots. The IceHogs outshot the Heat 38-23 in the game.
Abbotsford scored once on six power play attempts, while the penalty kill negated five-of-eight Rockford man advantages.
Sunday the Heat will return to Milwaukee for their final game of the season against the Admirals.The game's 3:00 pm PST start closes out three road games in three days for the Heat. Abbotsford’s 12-day road trip finishes on Wednesday against the Chicago Wolves at Allstate Arena.