Kopecky, Hudler lead Griffins past Barons

Tomas Kopecky registered a natural hat trick and Jiri Hudler recorded the AHL’s second five-assist game in as many nights to lead Grand Rapids to a 9-2 rout of Cleveland at the Quicken Loans Arena on Thursday night.

Donald MacLean scored his league-leading 37th and 38th goals of the season for the Griffins, who scored five power-play goals en route to becoming the first team to reach 80 points this year. MacLean now has a point in 17 straight games.

Nate DiCasmirro, Clay Wilson, Kent McDonell and Nick Martens had the other Grand Rapids goals, and Valtteri Filppula and Kyle Quincey recorded two assists each.

The Griffins rebounded from Tuesday’s loss to Manitoba to improve to 20-3-1-1 in their last 25 games.

Rookie Josh Hennessy had a goal and an assist for the Barons, who saw their nine-game homestand end without a win (0-8-0-1). Cleveland is winless in 12 straight overall (0-10-1-1).

Omaha got two goals from Dave Moss and a goal and an assist from Justin Taylor to beat the San Antonio Rampage, 4-2, at the Civic Auditorium on Thursday. The Ak-Sar-Ben Knights have now won four straight games, and are tied for fourth place in the West Division.

Moss opened the scoring during a 5-on-3 power play, tapping in a feed from Craig MacDonald at 5:29 of the first period.

Moss scored another power-play goal less than five minutes later, poking in a rebound of a Richie Regehr shot.

Derek Couture also scored for Omaha, and the Knights finished with a 40-18 edge in shots on goal.

Jeff Taffe led the Rampage with a goal and an assist.