HOUSTON, Texas - Erik Westrum posted a goal and two assists, Kirby Law contributed a goal and a helper and Patrick O’Sullivan added two assists, as the Houston Aeros knocked off the Cleveland Barons 5-2 at Toyota Center. Rem Murray, Bryan Lundbohm and Roman Voloshenko also scored, and Josh Harding made 17 saves for Houston, which went 3-1-0-0 on its four-game homestand and travels to Rochester for a 6:30 p.m. Friday tilt.
Josh Gorges and Mike Iggulden each scored for Cleveland, which dropped to 2-7-1-1 in its last 11.
Westrum overtook Grand Rapids’ Jiri Hudler for the AHL points lead with 36 (12-24=36).
Murray began things just 61 seconds into the game with his third of the season. Matt Foy slid a left-to-right pass to a waiting Murray at the doorstep, and the veteran popped the puck into the net.
The score stayed that way until the teams combined for three goals late in the second. Lundbohm tallied a shorthanded goal - his fourth goal of the season - at 14:26. Joel Ward had a shot roll off his stick, and it came right to Lundbohm, who one-timed the puck by Patzold.
Voloshenko took a blind, backhanded pass from Westrum at the left post and put it into the net for a 3-0 lead, on the power play, with 1:08 left in the second. But the Barons came right back with Iggulden’s goal with 22 ticks left.
The Aeros extended back to a three-goal lead 2:24 into the third, when Westrum took a feed from Law and scored his 12th goal. Law added his 13th 1:36 later, with both goals coming on the power play.
The Barons drew within 5-2 with 5:44 left as Josh Gorges found the net with the teams 4-on-4.
Houston went 3-for-8 on the power play, while Cleveland was 0-for-10.
The Aeros scratched Colin Peters, Bill Kinkel, Joey Tetarenko and Andrei Nazarov.
Houston improved to 16-2-1-3 in its last 22 regular-season home games, and 24-4-1-3 in the last 32.
Harding has 34 wins in his season-plus with the Aeros, tied with Manny Fernandez and Troy Gamble for third place on the team’s all-time list.