IceHogs Start Playoffs With Dramatic Overtime Win
The IceHogs qualified for the postseason with a win on the final day of the regular season, ensuring the Blackhawks’ front office’s hope of getting some of the organization’s top prospects some playoff experience would at last at least two games.
The Iowa Wild were in Rockford on Wednesday night for Game One of the first round of the Calder Cup Playoffs. With the first round being a best-of-three series, winning the first game on home ice is critical; Games Two and Three are in Iowa.
Iowa took a 1-0 lead at 3:26 into the first period, but the IceHogs answered just 18 seconds later when David Gust found the back of the net. Brett Seney and Luke Philp were credited with the assists.
Rockford took a 2-1 lead with 2:05 left in the first period as Seney scored his first goal of the postseason. Gust and Isaak Phillips picked up the helpers on Rockford’s second goal of the night.
The visitors tied the game at two at 4:14 into the second period and that’s where the score remained through the duration of the second and third periods. We were headed to overtime.
One of the more important additions to the IceHogs’ roster at the trade deadline was a move that didn’t have implications on the Blackhawks’ payroll. Rockford acquired forward Rocco Grimaldi, one of the leading scorers in the AHL this season, from San Diego. He was the hero in overtime, scoring at 3:59 into free hockey to send the teams to Iowa with Rockford holding an important 1-0 lead in the series.
Arvid Söderblom stopped 29 of 31 in the game. Grimaldi and Phillips finished tied for the Rockford team lead with four shots on net.
Game Two is in Iowa on Friday night. Game Three would be Sunday afternoon in Iowa.