By Jim Hagerty
BMO HARRIS BANK CENTER — Former Rockford forwards, brothers Alex and Terry Broadhurst collected five points between them as the Cleveland Monsters skated past the IceHogs 4-1 in American Hockey League action here Tuesday.
Terry Broadhurst opened the scoring three minutes into the first period, cleaning up a loose puck in front of Rockford goaltender Collin Delia. Cameron Gaunce and Alex Broadhurst assisted on the play.
It remained a one-goal contest until the 11:14 mark of the second period, when Paul Bittner cashed in on a Cleveland power play. The primary assist was Alex Broadhurst’s second point of the game; Andre Benoit added the secondary helper.
Despite struggles moving the puck into the Cleveland zone in the first two periods, the IceHogs made a game of it most of the night, and threatened to knot the score when Tomas Jurco powered a short-side wrist shot past Matiss Kivlenieks with 3:44 left in the game to make it 2-1. Rockford continued to chase the equalizer, and pulled Delia with a pair of minutes left on the clock. Terry Broadhurst closed the door on that opportunity with a diving swat from the IceHogs’ blue line the shuffled the puck into the empty Rockford cage.
Delia returned in the waning seconds, after a second empty netter by Alex Broadhurst at the 19:45 mark.
Even as it seemed like the Broadhursts were all over the ice Tuesday, Rockford had chances to capitalize on three Cleveland penalties but came up short on all of them, a familiar tale for the ‘Hogs of late when they have a man advantage.
“I think we wasted the first two power plays,” coach Jeremy Colliton said. “I thought the third was really good. But, if we didn’t waste two, maybe we score on the third one, or maybe we get one earlier. We can’t afford to waste two minutes. You never know how many (power plays) you’re going to get.”
Rockford is 2-for-19 on the power play in the last four games.
Delia turned away 20 of 23 shots in his third AHL loss of season. Kivleniek finished with 35 saves to earn his first win in four outings.
The IceHogs host the Monsters again Saturday, Jan. 6. Puck drop is 6 p.m. The first 1,500 fans will receive a free IceHogs winter hat, courtesy of BMO Harris Bank. R.