Game Recaps




Max Strang stopped all 27 shots on Tuesday as the Peoria Rivermen were shut out for the second time this season, and fell to the Bloomington Thunder, 2-0, on New Year’s Eve at the U.S. Cellular Coliseum. Bloomington’s Zach Pearson and Kyle Watson scored the game’s only two goals.  


With the loss, Peoria falls to 10-10-3 (23 points) on the season and is now on a three-game slide, plus a two-game skid against the Thunder. The Rivermen also fell one spot to eighth in the SPHL league standings.


For the full box score, click here.


After almost 40 minutes of scoreless hockey, Bloomington’s junior hockey coach and Thunder winger, Pearson, notched the game’s first goal on the power play with less than 18 seconds remaining in the second. Following a penalty to Nick Prockow for an illegal check at 18:26, Pearson grabbed a pass from Peter Cintala from the left side and buried it from the doorstep for his first goal of the season at 19:42. Cintala and former Rivermen winger Branden Parkhouse earned the helpers.


Bloomington added an insurance goal at 17:11 when Kyle Watson beat Rivermen netminder Eric Levine with a wrister from the slot following a pass from Ron Cramer from the left wing.


With 60 seconds left, Peoria head coach Jean-Guy Trudel pulled Levine for the extra attacker but the Rivermen couldn’t find the back of the net on several late chances.


Peoria finished the game 0-for-7 on the power play and 4-for-5 on the penalty kill. In addition, Levine made 28 saves on 30 shots, but fell for the second straight game and is now 7-7-3 on the year.


The Rivermen were outshot 30-27 on the night and have now been outshot in each of their last four games. Plus, Peoria has scored two goals or less in each of their last five games in a row.    


Peoria is 6-2-0 against the Thunder this season.


The Rivermen and Thunder will faceoff on New Year’s Day for a 5:15 p.m. rematch at Carver Arena. Fans can purchase a four-pack of upper bowl tickets for just $20.14, while the Rivermen will wear special edition New Year’s Day jerseys, which will be auctioned off following the final horn. In addition, Wednesday is a guaranteed win night! If the Rivermen don’t win, all fans will get into the Jan. 11 home game for free. The game can be heard locally on CD Country 107.9 FM or online at Fans can also follow along via the live video and audio stream at