The Rivermen Strike Back vs Storm, Clinch Rivalry Series
March 25, 2023 - 10:45 pm
MOLINE, IL– Less than 24 hours after being shutout 1-0 on home ice, the Rivermen stuck back against the Storm with a vengeance. The Rivermen dominated Quad City 6-1 on Saturday night to clinch the War on I-74 trophy and the rivalry series against the Storm.
Peoria wasted no time getting on the board as they dominated the pace of play. Mike Gelatt moved up ice on a two-on-one with newcomer Vadim Vasjonkin. The pass from Gelatt was perfect and Vasjonkin directed the shot into the back of the net for his first goal as a Rivermen in his first game in a Peoria uniform. The Rivermen followed it up eleven minutes later as Alec Baer followed up on a short angle shot that produced a rebound to net his first goal in five games to put Peoria up 2-0. In the final five minutes of the period, the Storm were looking to move up ice on a potential odd-man rush. But Joseph Drapluk picked the pocket of Quad City Forward Leif Mattson in the high slot and quickly turned down on the net. Drapluk made no mistake as he wired a hard wrist shot over the blocker of goaltender Kevin Resop. Resop had saved all 75 Rivermen shots in his last two starts against Peoria. In the first period, he allowed three goals in the first 13 he saw.
The Rivermen continued the attack in the second period. Joseph Widmar skated in on a short-ice breakaway and tucked the puck just under the crossbar. Widmar and the rest of the building thought he scored and, in the confusion, Zach Wilkie followed through and buried the rebound to secure his 8th goal of the season that extended the lead to 4-0. Just over two minutes later Ben Assad was able to will the puck into the net from a scrum in front. Down 5-0, Quad City was able to get on the board from a breakaway in the mid-stages of the period.
Peoria added on a power-play goal late in the third period as Mike Gelatt buried a rebound right in front of the net to cap off the night 6-1 for Peoria. The victory saw Peoria clinch the season series with the Storm with 22 points to Quad City’s 14. The Rivermen will be back on home ice on Sunday for the final home game against Quad City. Face-off is set for 3:15 for Peoria’s last Sunday game of the season.