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IceHogs hold off Amerks for fourth straight win

Wednesday’s Boxscores

Rockford has opened its seven-game road swing with four consecutive victories after taking a 2-1 decision from Rochester on Wednesday at the Blue Cross Arena.

IceHogs goaltender Corey Crawford had his shutout bid broken up in the game’s closing minute but still made 31 saves to pick up his 15th win (15-8-2).

The IceHogs struck first when Jake Dowell netted his third goal of the season 6:32 after the opening face-off, with assists going to Rob Klinkhammer and Niklas Hjalmarsson.

Rockford had a chance to make it 2-0 when captain Tim Brent was awarded a penalty shot at 10:14 of the opening period, but he was denied on the attempt by Rochester goaltender Tyler Plante.

After a scoreless middle stanza, the IceHogs did extend the lead to two goals in the third. Pascal Pelletier tallied his team-leading 23rd goal of the campaign 5:07 into the period, assists gong to Dowell and Adam Pineault.

That goal would prove big, as rookie Michal Repik finally put the Americans on the board at the 19:09 mark. Michael Duco and Karl Stewart earned helpers on Repik’s ninth goal of the year.

But Crawford and the IceHogs would hold on for the win, allowing them to set a new season high with the four-game road winning streak. The four-game run overall is Rockford’s longest since winning six in a row from Oct. 12-26.

The IceHogs, who currently sit second in the West Division with 58 points, continue their road stretch on Friday against first-place Milwaukee.

Joey Crabb tallied his first professional hat trick and added an assist to lead Chicago over visiting Peoria by a 5-1 count on Wednesday at Allstate Arena.

Crabb scored once in each period for the Wolves, tallying his eighth, ninth, and 10th AHL goals of the season. The 25-year-old has also appeared in 26 NHL games for parent-club Atlanta this year and shows seven points there (3-4-7).

The Wolves’ Spencer Machacek and Jordan LaVallee also netted goals with LaVallee’s going into an empty net late in the third frame. LaVallee (1-1-2), Jeff Hamilton (0-3-3), and Brett Skinner (0-2-2) joined Crabb in posting multiple-point evenings.

Wolves goaltender Ondrej Pavelec earned the victory with 30 saves, helping Chicago improve to 6-3-0-0 in its last nine games.

Trent Whitfield scored the lone goal for the Rivermen, who have dropped two in a row.

Worcester erupted for five goals over the game’s final 23:49, turning a 3-0 deficit into a 5-3 road win over Portland on Wednesday at the Cumberland County Civic Center.

Sharks captain Ryan Vesce led the attack with a goal and an assist, extending his current league-high scoring streak to 15 games (8-16-24).

Defenseman Patrick Traverse and rookie Andrew Desjardins kicked off the comeback with goals late in the second period. Vesce tied it at 3-3 just over 12 minutes into the third, and rookie Jamie McGinn gave Worcester the lead with 1:28 to play. Lukas Kaspar added an empty-netter in the closing minute.

Brad Staubitz posted two assists and goaltender Thomas Greiss made 19 saves for the Sharks, who pulled within a point of first-place Providence in the Atlantic Division.

The Pirates received a pair of first-period goals from Tim Kennedy and one from Felix Schutz to build their 3-0 lead. Kennedy hadn’t scored since Nov. 19.

Six different players netted goals as Manchester doubled up Hartford by a 6-3 count on Wednesday at the XL Center.

Marty Murray, Matt Moulson, David Meckler, and Viatcheslav Voynov each posted a goal and an assist for the Monarchs, who scored five times over the final 40 minutes.

Scott Parse and rookie Justin Azevedo added a single goal apiece, and Trevor Lewis chipped in a pair of assists. All told, 13 of Manchester’s 18 skaters registered at least one point in the victory.

Monarchs goaltender Daniel Taylor earned the win with 23 saves on 26 shots.

Pierre-Alexandre Parenteau, Jordan Owens, and Dale Weise scored for the Wolf Pack, whose three-game winning streak came to an end. It also marked Hartford’s first loss in four games against Manchester this season (3-1-0-0).

Binghamton built a 3-0 lead and had to hold on for a 4-3 win over visiting San Antonio on Wednesday at the Broome County Arena.

Tomas Kudelka posted a goal and an assist for the Senators. He opened the game’s scoring 14:32 into the contest and was followed early in the second by Zack Smith (1:11) and Marc Cavosie (3:54), the latter coming shorthanded.

Wyatt Smith then scored two power play goals in less than four minuets to pull the Rampage within 3-2, but Josh Hennessy regained Binghamton’s two-goal edge with a power play marker of his own at 13:28 of the second.

Viktor Tikhonov, a first-round draft pick in 2008 who had spent all season in the NHL with Phoenix prior to being reassigned earlier in the day, netted his first career AHL goal late in the third for the Rampage.

Senators goaltender Martin Gerber emerged with the victory, finishing with 26 saves on 29 shots.

Syracuse ended a three-game winless skid (0-2-1-0) on Wednesday by rallying for a 2-1 road triumph over Hamilton at Copps Coliseum.

The Crunch entered the third period trailing by a goal, but received the tying marker from AHL All-Star Derek MacKenzie at 9:19 and the game-winner from Trevor Frischmon – his second goal of the year – at the 13:38 mark.

The rally made a winner of Syracuse goaltender Sebastian Dahm, who finished with 27 saves to pick up his first victory since Jan. 16.

Kyle Chipchura netted a second-period goal for the Bulldogs, who have lost three straight games for the first time since Nov. 29 to Dec. 4.

Francis Lemieux broke a 2-2 tie with 5:24 left in regulation to send Grand Rapids to a 3-2 road win over Quad City on Wednesday at the I Wireless Center.

It marked Lemieux’s fourth goal in the last two games, as he registered a hat trick in Saturday’s 8-4 win over Rochester.

Darren Haydar and Garrett Stafford tallied first-period goals for the Griffins, but the Flames responded on second-period markers by Brett Sutter and Jamie Lundmark.

Griffins goaltender Jimmy Howard made a season-high 44 saves in the winning effort, upping his season record to 14-10-3. It also marked Howard’s second 40-plus save showing against the Flames in less than two weeks, coming on the heels of his 43-save shutout in a 1-0 shootout win at Van Andel Arena on Jan. 24.

Grand Rapids reached the 30-win and 70-point marks overall (30-9-6-4) and sits one point back of first-place Manitoba in the North Division race.