Rockford's Independent Newspaper

BUZZER BEATER: Late goal pushes IceHogs past Grand Rapids

Staff Report

GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. — Luke Johnson netted the game-winning goal with less than a second remaining in the overtime session as the Rockford IceHogs overcame a two-goal deficit to defeat the Grand Rapids Griffins, 3-2, Wednesday night at Van Andel Arena.

The victory gives the IceHogs three straight wins and nine victories in their last 11 contests.

As time was expiring in overtime, Johnson potted the dagger on a rebound after Graham Knott threw the puck on net in a last-ditch effort to end the game prior to the shootout.

After Rockford fell into an early 2-0 hole, Joni Tuulola responded for the IceHogs in the second period, collecting a centering feed in the high slot from forward Peter Holland and converting high to the glove side of Griffins goaltender Harri Sateri.

Jordan Schroeder tied the contest in the third stanza on a back-handed rebound of a Holland wrister, setting the stage for Johnson’s overtime heroics. Schroeder now has five points in his last three games and 12 in his last 12 appearances.

With assists on both regulation goals, Holland notched two points in his first game with Rockford after being acquired via trade by the Chicago Blackhawks. The forward is now tied for fourth in the league with 51 total points this season.

Wade Megan and Matt Puempel both tallied in the opening frame to give Grand Rapids the early lead.

IceHogs goaltender Anton Forsberg made 37 saves in the victory, eclipsing the 30-save mark for the third time in as many starts. R.

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