From: Robert Desimone
, Communications Manager
, Asst. Communications Manager
December 13, 2009
GUNDERSON RECORDS FIRST MULTI-POINT GAME OF AHL CAREER
HOUSTON – The Houston Aeros (13-12-2-1) ended a three-game winless streak with a 4-1 victory over the Rockford IceHogs (15-14-2-1) in front of 5,723 Sunday at Toyota Center. RW Jean-Michel Daoust (1-1=2) and D Ryan Gunderson (0-2=2) each recorded multi-point games, Gunderson’s first of his AHL career. G Wade Dubielewicz (4-7-0) saved 20 of 21 to record his fourth win of the season while G Dan Cloutier tallied 23 saves in the loss.
“We had a point of emphasis where we were 2-4-1 in non-night games and we had to tip-toe there in the third but the bottom line is we got it done,” said Head Coach Kevin Constantine. “Tonight we were steady, a couple down moments but they didn’t last the whole period so that’s good to see too.”
The Aeros jumped out to an early one-goal lead when C Chad Rau threw the puck on net where Daoust was there to clean up for his team-leading ninth of the year at the 1:12 mark; Gunderson also got credit for an assist. The goal is the fastest the Aeros have scored to open a game this season, besting the previous mark of 1:36 set at Lake Erie (11/13). It’s also the third time in as many games Rau has found Daoust for a goal.
The IceHogs tied the game 8:23 into the second period when LW Bryan Bickell found an open C Evan Brophey in the slot . The Aeros answered at 14:57 thanks to a slap shot from the center point off the stick of captain Jon DiSalvatore. Daoust and Gunderson each received assists on the power-play goal, giving Daoust his third multi-point game of the season.
“Jon’s was a shot and part of the reason he played up top was we just felt we weren’t shooting enough up top and we know he does,” Constantine said. “Point shots with traffic are the number one thing you have to do a lot of and it’s good to see him do that.”
The Aeros took a two-goal lead at the 3:11 mark of the final session off the stick of D Maxim Noreau, his fifth of the year and RW Danny Irmen sealed the game with an empty-netter at 19:34.
The Aeros moved to 6-1-0-0 when leading going into the third period (3-0-0-0 at home) and 7-0-0-0 when scoring four or more goals. Houston outshot the IceHogs 27-21. The Aeros went 1-for-5 on the power play while the penalty kill went a perfect 5-for-5.
“We came real close the other night, only losing by one, and got a win tonight,” Constantine said. “We almost have to play like a playoff team. We’re sixth place going into today and while there’s a lot of season left, we can’t fall out of the playoff race. We’ve got to stay right in the mix.”
The Aeros travel to Cedar Park, TX to take on the West Division leading Texas Stars Tuesday. Puck drop is scheduled for 7:30 p.m. at the Cedar Park Center. Aeros broadcaster Joe O’Donnell will have the play-by-play live on 1070 AM-KNTH and ahllive.com. Follow the in-game blog at zamchron.com.
Joe O'Donnell Calls of the Game
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