From: Robert Desimone
, Communications Manager
, Asst. Communications Manager
January 30, 2010
AEROS RETURN HOME MONDAY TO HOST ABBOTSFORD
PEORIA, IL – The Houston Aeros (23-19-6-1) rallied from four goals down in the final 12:57 and C Chad Rau scored the game-winning-goal in the shootout to stun the Peoria Rivermen (23-18-1-4) 5-4 Saturday night in front of 4,438 at Carver Arena. RW Jon DiSalvatore sparked the comeback with two goals, D Max Noreau added a goal and two assists and G Anton Khudobin (10-14-1) made 32 saves for his first win since November 25 at Hamilton. C Derek Armstrong scored all four goals for Peoria and added one in the shootout while G Ben Bishop (14-9-3) made 27 saves in the loss.
The game was physical early as the teams combined for 32 penalty minutes in the first period, including two fights. At 18:15 D Brandon Rogers took a penalty for boarding and the Rivermen capitalized late. After a shot was deflected to the corner, Armstrong gained control and skated to the left faceoff circle where he fired a slap shot over the shoulder of Khudobin at 19:58 to give Peoria a 1-0 lead heading to the first intermission.
The Aeros controlled the play early in the second period but were unable to capitalize as Bishop stood strong and Peoria countered. Armstrong scored his second of the game at 8:38 as C Yan Stastny set him for the goal, C Nicholas Drazenovic also received an assist on the play.
The teams headed to the third period with Peoria leading 2-0, and they extended their lead early in the final frame. Just 54 seconds into the third, Armstrong completed the natural hat trick as he banged one by Khudobin. Armstrong then scored his fourth of the game at 4:54, and the Rivermen appeared to be headed for victory.
After being shutout Friday at Milwaukee, the Aeros scoreless streak reached more than 110 minutes, but that finally ended when DiSalvatore one-timed a point shot through the legs of Bishop at 7:03 on the power-play. The goal sparked the Aeros, who scored three more goals over the next 7:34 to tie the game.
At 10:07 Rau scored his 12th of the season, Noreau fired the inital shot and on the rebound Rau gained control and beat Bishop top shelf. Just 46 seconds later, at 10:53, LW Petr Kalus found DiSalvatore on the back door and the goal brought the Aeros within one. Noreau then completed the comeback at 14:37, RW Duncan Milroy found a streaking Noreau who walked in on Bishop and fired the shot by the goaltender to tie the game 4-4 and force overtime.
It was the 15th overtime game of the season for Houston, second in the AHL to Bridgeport (18). Just three of the previous 14 OT games went to a shootout where the Aeros were 2-1 this season. After neither team was able to score in overtime, the Aeros went to their fourth of the season trying to earn the second point. Armstrong scored on the opening shot for Peoria but DiSalvatore answered as he snapped a shot by Bishop. Khudobin then stopped the final four opportunities by the Rivermen and Rau scored the game-winning-goal with a backhand shot past Bishop.
Peoria outshot the Aeros 36-32 for the game and both teams finished 1-for-5 on the powerplay. It was the first time an opposing player scored four goals in a game against Houston since Dave Tomlinson (Cincinnati Cyclones) on March 9, 1996. The Aeros scoreless streak ended officially at 114:23, they had not scored since JM Dauost's goal at 12:40 of the third period at Chicago on Wednesday.
The Aeros return home Monday to host the Abbotsford Heat, 7:05 PM at Toyota Center. Watch the game live on AHLlive.com or listen on 1070 AM - KNTH. Follow the interactive in-game blog at Aeros.com. Check out the Aeros “Sweetheart Deal” and get $25 Center Ice Seats. For more information visit aeros.com or call 713-974-PUCK (7825).
Joe O'Donnell Calls of the Game:
Khudobin Save to win game
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