Hockey In Central IL
Calling All Fans of hockey in Central IL
Known as the heart of Illinois, Central IL is something special, both to those who have experienced it and those who haven't. It's a blend of cultures, with its mix of industry, business, and agriculture. Central Illinois is a transportation hub, with multiple Amtrak lines featuring stops across the area, as well as a host of expressways criss-crossing the region.
Many of us have called central IL home for most if not all of our lives, and we hope you'll join us. The Peoria Rivermen invite with open arms all hockey fans living in central Illinois to come check out a game. Whether you live nearby in Peoria, or a bit farther away in Springfield, Decatur, Quincy, Bloomington-Normal, Champaign-Urbana, Galesburg or Danville, we hope to see you come through our doors.
The Best Hockey In Central IL
Even with our transitions between leagues over the years, the Rivermen have continued to play at a high level no matter what. While our move to the Southern Pacific Hockey League came as a bit of a shock, the team has really found a grove, capturing back-to-back regular season championships in the SPHL, including a trip to the President’s Cup finals in 2016.
It is this consistent success that has made Rivermen hockey the best hockey in central Illinois.
Looking back, we're reminded of some great moments in Rivermen history. The 1990-1991 season was one of the best in Rivermen history, though it (like the 2013-2014 season) started with a surprising transition. Right before the start of the season, the then-parent club St. Louis Blues called up then-Rivermen coach Wayne Thomas to be an assistant coach on the NHL team's staff.
Rivermen legend and Hall of Fame inductee Bobby Plager took the reins and patiently guided the team to a professional hockey record 18-game win streak, a Turner Cup championship, and a season in which the Rivermen produced 41 professional, league or franchise records. That wasn't all - 15 members of the team went on to the NHL, including Plager himself, who was later promoted to be the Blues head coach.
The Rivermen had another historic season in 2015-2016. The team rode a league-high 14-game streak through December and January, propelled by strong defense and lockdown goaltending from two-time SPHL Goalie of the Year Kyle Rank. The team finished with 39 wins and their second consecutive regular season title. The team swept the Fayetteville FireAntz in the semifinals, allowing a record zero goals in the entire series.
HOCKEY IN central IL
For top level hockey in central IL, we encourage you to check out a Rivermen game.