New Year's Celebration Starts With 2-1 Win
Mike McKenna out dueled the AHL's top
goaltender in Barry Brust as the Peoria Rivermen came back to beat the
Abbotsford Heat 2-1 in a shootout on New Year's Eve at Carver Arena. McKenna
made 35 saves in regulation and overtime and then stopped four of five in the
shootout to earn the win.
It was the third shootout win of the season for
McKenna as he has now stopped 12 of 13 shootout attempts on the season.
After a fast-paced but scoreless first period,
Kris Kolanos opened the second with a power-play goal to give the Heat a 1-0
lead. Kolanos tucked a shot, from along the goal line, over the shoulder of
McKenna for his ninth of the season at 2:34. Despite the fact that Peoria was
outshot 17-10 in the second period it was still 1-0 at the start of the third.
Taylor Chorney tied the score with a goal at
7:35 of the third period. Derek Nesbitt and Ian Cole earned assists on the play
and Chorney scooped the puck off the boards and rifled a snapshot under the
glove of Brust from the right faceoff circle.
The Rivermen has a chance to end the game in
overtime with a 4-on-3 power play with only 2:19 left but the Heat penalty kill finished
Phil McRae and Jaden Schwartz scored in the
shootout while McKenna allowed just a single goal as Peoria snapped a
three-game losing streak. The Rivermen outshot the Heat 38-36 and marked the
fourth straight game in which they have outshot the opposition.
Peoria improved to 16-11-1 all-time on New
Year's Eve and 8-3-1 on home ice.
The Rivermen head back on the road to challenge
the San Antonio Rampage on Friday at 7:30pm. All games can be heard on CD
Country 107.9 FM or online through www.rivermen.net.