Monsters Rally for Win Over Wild
CLEVELAND – In front of 10,131 fans at The Q, Cleveland’s Lake Erie Monsters capped their eight-game season series vs. the Iowa Wild with a come-from-behind 3-1 victory on Friday night. With the win, the Monsters improved to 13-5-1-2 overall this season and with a .690 points percentage, are currently tied for first place in the AHL’s Central Division standings.
After a measured start to Friday’s game for both teams, the Wild claimed a 1-0 lead on an even-strength Jared Knight goal, assisted by Raphael Bussieres, at 14:14 of the opening period. After a scoreless middle frame, the Monsters tied the game at 11:27 of the third, when John Ramage buried his second goal in two games at even-strength on feeds from Josh Anderson and Sonny Milano.
After ramping up the pressure down the stretch, the Monsters took their first lead at 17:32 when Manny Malhotra won an offensive-zone faceoff and Michael Paliotta ripped home what proved to be the game-winning goal from the right point after sending a shot off the stick of an Iowa player. A Trent Vogelhuber empty-netter at 19:29, assisted by Nick Moutrey, established Lake Erie’s 3-1 margin of victory.
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Anton Forsberg improved to 5-0-0 at home this season by virtue of a 19-save performance in net for the Monsters while Leland Irving stopped 19 of the 21 shots he faced in defeat for the Wild.
Next up for the Monsters, it’s a Saturday road clash vs. the Grand Rapids Griffins with full coverage underway from Van Andel Arena in Grand Rapids, MI at 7:00 pm on 99X and the Monsters Hockey Network.