What I did not like about the game, and Aeros head coach Mike Yeo agreed with me, is the steep drop off in the level of play between from the first 10 minutes to the second 30 minutes. For lack of a better phrase, the team just fell off a cliff. Tonight, they got what they deserved. There were some very close chances in the latter stages of the third period, but the team cannot play with fire every game and expect to pull out the "Ws."
Yeo talked about one -on -one battles tonight and how two breakdowns led to both Rockford goals. I cannot recall what happened on the first one, but Drew Bagnall got beat behind the net and Igor Markarov served up an easy goal for Potulny, who scored his second in as many games.
The Aeros' goal tonight was to throw 40 shots at the young goalie, and they did that. They out-chanced the IceHogs, too, but from the middle of the first period through the second, they did not play well enough to get that second goal on the board.
It's easy to say the outcome would have been different tonight had they gone into the third period 2-2, but that is exactly what they needed. The IceHogs and the young goalie calmly turned aside every Aeros scoring chance in the third period and walked out of this two-game series with three of a possible four points.
Another bit of potentially disturbing news is that Robbie Earl left Friday's game with an upper body injury. He is day to day, but the Aeros really could have used him for a chance to get that tying goal. Also, Chad Rau played his first game since October. He was hurt in practice with a face injury (the cage around it kind of gave that away) after playing in the first four games of the season. Good to see him back, and he had a couple of very decent chances in the game.
I don't think the game in Cedar Park is going to go very well. Aeros on the road, playing a three in three with Texas well rested and only playing it's second straight game. They lost to San Antonio at home in a shootout, so they will be nice and pissed off.
Heather will have more later with quotes from Yeo. Have a good night everyone.