Rookie Goaltender Jake Allen Records Third Career Shutout in 2-0 Win
It only took Jake Allen six starts to put his name next to Manny Legace in the Peoria Rivermen record book as he posted his third shutout of the season in a 2-0 win over the Abbotsford Heat on Friday night at Carver Arena.
The three shutouts are now tied with Legace for the most by a Rivermen goaltender in a single season since the team joined the American Hockey League. Allen is now 5-1-0-0 with a 1.26 goals-against average and a .961 save percentage to start his professional career.
Adam Cracknell scored the game’s first goal just 55 seconds into the second period after skating through the right circle and wristing a puck past Leland Irving’s glove. The goal went unassisted for Cracknell’s third of the year.
The Rivermen continued strong play in the second and the game took a clean but physical tone. Stefan Della Rovere put a big hit on Josh Meyers halfway through the second period, helping keep the pace for the rest of the game.
Phil McRae buried his first power-play goal of the year from the bottom of the left circle after receiving a cross-ice pass from Derek Nesbitt halfway through the third period. Nick Drazenovic also recorded an assist on the goal. McRae is now tied with Drazenovic and TJ Hensick with a team-leading six goals.
The Rivermen killed off a five-on-three advantage late in the third period, with a great save by Allen on a point-blank one-timer to end the two-man advantage. He finished with career-high 37 saves and has alternated shutouts in each of his first six starts.
Peoria killed off all eight Heat power plays, while going 1-for-3 on the man advantage thanks to McRae’s goal. The Rivermen finished the game with 27 shots against Irving who entered play with a league-leading 10 wins.
The game was also marked by the induction of former ECHL head coach Jason Christie into the Peoria Rivermen Hall of Fame. He became the 33rd member and fifth coach to join the Peoria Rivermen Hockey Hall of Fame. A former Rivermen player on the 1999-2000 Kelly Cup winning Rivermen team, Christie took over as head coach the following season and led the team to 233 wins over five seasons.
The Rivermen take on the Heat again Saturday night at Carver Arena at 7:05 p.m. The first 2,500 fans will receive a Rivermen hat courtesy of OSF St. Francis Medical Center. For tickets or more information call 309-676-1040 or visit www.rivermen.net.