IceHogs Look To Break Out Of Three-Game Slump

  

The Rockford IceHogs enter the weekend on a three-game losing streak, having gone 0-2-1 over that span. Taking on the Grand Rapids Griffins at home on Friday and then travelling to face the Chicago Wolves on Saturday, the IceHogs look to finally crack the 100-goal mark on the season as a team, sitting last in the AHL currently with 93 goals.

IceHogs Hoping To Break Three-Game Losing Streak Over Weekend

The Rockford IceHogs need to focus on one thing to find success this weekend: Score.

Simple, right?

Ranking last in the AHL in goals scored this season with 93, the IceHogs goals per game rate is a lowly 2.27. The next lowest in the league belongs to the Manitoba Moose with a 2.52 goals per game rate.

The IceHogs have benefitted all season from above-average to stellar goaltending all season. From Collin Delia leading the AHL in save-percentage and GAA at different points early on this season, to Kevin Lankinen and Anton Forsberg both clocking in with save-percentages above 0.910 this season, Rockford has been kept in games based on the play in-between the pipes on a consistent basis. But giving goalies an average of just over two goals per game will rarely win you many hockey games.

Rockford IceHogs Dylan Sikura

Dylan Sikura of the Rockford IceHogs. (Courtesy: Rockford IceHogs)

Leading the IceHogs offense this season has come by committee with Dylan Sikura, Anthony Louis, and Jordan Schroeder leading the way. Louis leads the team in overall points with 25 this season, while Sikura leads the team in goals with 11. Sikura and Louis, along with Jacob Nilsson are the only three players to score double-digit goals this season. Last season, the IceHogs finished the season with eight players scoring double-digit goals.

The most glaring difference in this season compared to last is who the IceHogs are missing from their roster: last season’s goal-leader Matthew Highmore. Early in the season, Highmore went down with a shoulder injury that required surgery and was given a four-to-six month timetable for return in mid-November. In the eight games he played this season, Highmore tallied seven points and was showing early on why he was one of the last cuts from Chicago Blackhawks training camp.

Matthew Highmore Rockford IceHogs

Matthew Highmore of the Rockford IceHogs. (Courtesy: Rockford IceHogs)

If the IceHogs are going to find success against two of the top teams in the AHL Central Division this weekend, they will have to light the lamp more than their 2.27 goals per game average. The Wolves lead the division with 50 points this season, followed closely by the Griffins and Iowa Wild, both with 49 points this season. The Wolves are tied with the Charlotte Checkers for the most goals scored this season (146) and the Griffins rank 14th in the AHL (126). Chicago averages 3.65 goals per game and the Griffins clock-in at 3.07 goals per game.

Roster Updates

Only one move since the last update as Matheson Iacopelli was recalled by the IceHogs from the Indy Fuel. Iacopelli played in 3 games with the Fuel during his assignment, but recorded no points. This season with Rockford, Iacopelli has 4 points (2 G, 2 A) in 25 games played.

What’s Next?

The Rockford IceHogs return to action on Friday night to kick-off back-to-back games in the state of Illinois over the weekend. Starting Friday night in Rockford, the IceHogs host the Grand Rapids Griffins. Puck drop at the BMO Harris Bank Center is set for 7pm CT. Rockford holds a 2-3-0 record against the Griffins so far this season.

Following Friday night’s home game, the IceHogs head to Rosemont to take on the Chicago Wolves on Saturday night. Another installment of the Illinois Lottery Cup Rivalry is set for a 7pm CT puck drop at the Allstate Arena. This season, the IceHogs hold a 3-3-1 record against the Wolves with the road team holding a 6-0-1 record in the series.

Center Ice Forums IceHogs Look To Break Out Of Three-Game Slump

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