Rockford IceHogs (1) at Cleveland Monsters (4)
It took almost a full period of play before a goal was scored. With a little under three minutes to play in the first, the Rockford IceHogs notched the first goal of the night when Matthew Highmore banged in a rebound.
Highmore’s first period goal clearly amped the Monsters up as they scored four unanswered goals over two periods.
Almost two minutes into the second period, the Monsters tied the game at one. Zac Dalpe battled hard along the boards to free the puck and managed to get it on Eric Robinson’s stick. Robinson immediately fired the puck into the net.
“Dalps (Zac Dalpe) had good speed through the neutral zone. I was able to get the puck deep and jaw a few defenders for him. Which left me open up front. So, I was able to be there for him.” – Eric Robinson (Cleveland Monsters Forward)
The Monsters broke the tie 3:26 into the second period thanks to a nice little rocket from the top of the faceoff circle by Kevin Stenlund.
“I just tried to get in the passing lane and Stenlund picked it up and had a pretty nice shot. For me, it’s just playing the game the right way. It was a nice shot by him.” – Nathan Gerbe (Cleveland Monsters Captain)
Vitaly Ambramov extended the Monsters lead to 3-1 with 4:46 left to play in the game. He took off with the puck. When he realized the lane to the net was blocked by Carl Dahlstrom and Andrew Campbell, he made the quick decision to pass the puck off to Michael Prapavessis. Abramov stayed in the exact same spot. When the lane cleared, Prapavessis passed the puck back to Abramov who let it rip into the net.
With a little under three minutes to play in the game, Justin Scott ripped one towards the IceHogs empty net. Paul Bittner chased the puck down the ice to make sure a goal was scored.
The Monsters happily skated away from the first game of the season as victors.
But Wait! There’s More
- Dillon Simpson is great at getting in front of the puck and is unafraid to sacrifice his body.
- The Rockford IceHogs are way more aggressive this year than they have been in years past. Luckily, the Monsters were ready for their feist and were able to go toe-to-toe with their shenanigans. Once the Monsters calmed down they were able to put pucks on net.
- “With the group of guy we got we want to me aggressive. I think we made somem bad decisions that we talked about. We lost our deep end. We got over aggressive. To be expected. Everyone was excited to play.” – John Madden (Cleveland Monsters Head Coach)
- Zac Dalpe did a phenomenal job of working along the boards to clear out pucks. He was also equally as good at finding the right place to send the puck.
- Jean-Francois Berube kept the Monsters in the game tonight. There were multiple times the Monsters’ defense left Berube unattended or forwards were forced to protect him.
1st – Kevin Stenlund
2nd – Eric Robinson
3rd – Jean-Francois Berube
The Monsters have finally named a captain. For the 2018-19 season, Nathan Gerbe will wear the “C” on his chest.
Eric Robinson scored his first professional goal in the second period of tonight’s game. This was also the first goal of the 2018-19 season for the Monsters.
The Monsters and IceHogs meet again tomorrow for a 1pm tilt.
It’s Monsters Family Day Game! The first 2,500 kids age 12 and under will receive a Snappets Monster noise maker and a Cedar Point Halloweekend Kids Pass.
There is also a food special for the kids. Six dollars will get you a Sugardale hotdog, chips, and a drink.
Since it’s October, bring a pair of socks to Quicken Loans Arena to donate.