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GRIFFINS OPEN ROAD SCHEDULE WITH 5-4 LOSS IN ROCKFORD

Oct. 10, 2010 - GRAND RAPIDS GRIFFINS 4 at Rockford IceHogs 5

ROCKFORD, Ill
. – Ryan Potulny scored the game-winning goal for the Rockford IceHogs at 10:56 of the third period, handing the Grand Rapids Griffins a 5-4 loss Sunday evening at the Rockford MetroCentre.

With the loss Grand Rapids’ 12-year point streak in road openers came to an end (9-0-2-1), however its overall mark in road openers stands at 10-2-2-1.

The Griffins will continue their three-game road trip when they kick off a back-to-back set in Manitoba against the Moose on Friday at 8:30 p.m. EDT.

Rockford opened the scoring just 1:35 into the game when Simon Denis-Pepin fired a shot past Thomas McCollum. The Griffins battled back, taking a 2-1 lead heading into the first intermission. At 13:28, Francis Pare fed a pass to Doug Janik, who blasted a shot from the left point, before Cory Emmerton netted a power play goal for the Griffins’ with only 12 seconds remaining in the frame.

Evan Brophey tied the game at 2:42 of the second period, only to be answered by a Logan Pyett goal on the power play off assists from Ilari Filppula and Jan Mursak at 9:54.

The IceHogs quickly responded less than two minutes later when Rob Klinkhammer buried a shot off a rebound at 11:43 to even the score 3-3. Then late in the period Rockford claimed a 4-3 advantage. Ben Smith fired a shot that slipped behind a sprawled McCollum and settled in the blue paint to be knocked in by Igor Makarov with less than a minute to go.

Early in the third period, Grand Rapids tied the game as Brendan Smith hit Tomas Tatar, who fed a pass to Mursak, who in turn buried the puck high over Alec Richards’ glove at 1:45. Potulny tallied the game winning goal on slap shot from the left circle at 10:56 claiming a 5-4 win over Grand Rapids.

McCollum finished the game with 28 saves while Richards managed 25 saves for Rockford.

Three Stars: 1. RFD Klinkhammer (1 goal, 1 assist); 2. RFD Potulny (GW goal, 1 assist); 3. GR Tatar (2 assists)

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