Levine's Penalty Shot Save Helps Secure 5-3 Win Over Storm

February 1, 2020 - 01:02 am

Levine’s Penalty Shot Save Helps Secure 5-3 Win Over Storm

Hunter leads team with two goal, three point game

Photo credits: Photography By Allen


Peoria, IL – Eric Levine made a final minute penalty shot stop, and the Peoria Rivermen built themselves out to a three goal lead that the club eventually hung onto for a 5-3 road win over the Quad City Storm Friday night.


Peoria improves to 24-4-3 on the season and 7-2 through nine meetings on the season with their “Land of Lincoln” rival. Quad City took the regulation loss, falling out of a playoff spot with an 11-15-6 record. 


The Rivermen built themselves a two goal lead to carry into the second period, courtesy of Drake Hunter, who netted his second career two goal game. With Paul Fregeau serving a minor penalty as an instigator in his fight with Ryan Devine, the Rivermen scored their fourth shorthanded goal of the season. At the 9:42 mark, Robin Hoglund darted down the ice with Hunter crashing the net. Hoglund’s shot was sent toward the goal, deflecting off Hunter’s skate and past Storm net minder, Ryan Mulder for the 1-0 advantage. 


Less than three minutes later, Hunter again converted, this time using his stick to find a puck that was contested for in the slot. Hunter spun around to shoot home his second goal of the evening.


Nick Neville boosted the Rivermen lead to three with a slap shot from the right point 1:21 into the second period, but Vincent Beaudry scored just 34 seconds later to bring Quad City back within two. Another quick strike came 22 seconds after that, with Alec Hagaman streaking down the left wing to bury a wrist shot by Mulder for his team leading 18th goal of the season, thus putting Peoria back up by three. Ryan Mulder was pulled following four goals against on 17 shots.


Quad City pulled themselves to within a pair once more, thanks to Connor Fries. The first year pro scored his fifth goal against Peoria this season when Dakota Klecha fed him from behind the net to drill a shot in front, beating Levine to make it 4-2.


Beaudry scored his second goal of the night for the Storm just past the midway point of the third to bring the Storm a goal shy of tying the game. Joe Sova sent a left point drive toward Levine when the puck bounced off the ice, catching a piece of Beaudry’s stick before going into the net.


Throughout the game, Peoria managed to hold a lead in large part to the success of its penalty kill. The team managed to kill all five minors dealt their way, but the largest stop was needed toward the very end. With 52.2 seconds left and the score 4-3, Taylor Pryce was awarded a penalty shot due to Hagaman getting in the Rivermen crease to cover a puck. Pryce, the Storm’s leading scorer, slowed down as he crept toward the net for his shot, before being beat by the shoulder of Levine. Shortly after, Mitch McPherson cruised toward a vacant Storm net to toss home the empty net goal for the 5-3 final.


Levine earned the win in goal, stopping 27 of 30 bids, improving his record to 16-1-3. Peter Di Salvo came in relief of Mulder, stopping all 15 shots he faced. Mulder suffered the loss Friday, falling to 4-5-3.


The Rivermen engage in a rematch Saturday night against the Quad City Storm at the Tax Slayer Center….Puck drop for Saturday’s game is scheduled for  7:10 p.m. CST….The broadcast of the game can be heard, at http://mixlr.com/peoria-rivermen/ starting with the pre-game show, at 6:55 p.m. CST.


Group, single game, and season tickets for Peoria's 38th season of professional hockey presented by Midwest Orthopaedic Center are on sale at the Toyota Box Office in the Peoria Civic Center, at the Rivermen office, located at 201 S.W. Jefferson Street, or over the phone at (309) 676-1040. For the latest Rivermen news and notes, follow online at www.rivermen.net or through Facebook (www.facebook.com/PeoriaRivermen) - Twitter(https://twitter.com/Peoria_Rivermen)