Report for the Week Ending Oct. 14
With new Head Coach Dave Allison on board, the Peoria Rivermen opened the season in Canada for the first time in franchise history last weekend.
Oct. 12 – L 4-1 at Abbotsford
Even with Peoria’s 25 shots on goal to Abbotsford’s 16, the Heat skated to a 4-1 victory on Friday night at the Abbotsford Entertainment & Sports Centre. After obtaining a 3-0 lead, including two deflections and a power-play goal from Ben Street, top prospect Sven Baertschi added the final Heat goal at 16:17 of the second period. With Peoria down 4-0, Jake Allen was replaced by Mike McKenna to start the third period. McKenna stopped both of the shots he saw over the final 20 minutes. Anthony Peluso scored the lone Rivermen goal at 9:02 of the third period with assists from Adam Cracknell and Evgeny Grachev.
Oct. 13 – L 6-2 at Abbotsford
The Heat rallied with 33 shots to Peoria’s 19 on Saturday night in a 6-2 rout at the Abbotsford Entertainment & Sports Centre. Anthony Peluso added his second goal in as many games just 1:53 into the first period, but Abbotsford was quick to counter. Sergey Andronov’s first career AHL goal put Peoria up again at 9:10 in the first period with a tough-angled shot past Danny Taylor’s glove. David Shields and Jaden Schwartz were credited with assists on Andronov’s tally. Abbotsford went on to record five unanswered markers, including two power-play goals. Jake Allen stopped 27 of 33 shots on goal in all 60 minutes of action, while Abbotsford goalie Danny Taylor saved 17 of 19.
- On June 13, the Rivermen announced Dave Allison as the team’s 18th head coach in franchise history. Allison, 53, most recently served as an amateur scout with the Pittsburgh Penguins. The 2012-13 season will mark Allison’s seventh season as an AHL head coach after stints with Prince Edward Island (1994-96), Milwaukee (2001-02) and Iowa (2005-08). In 423 games as an AHL head coach, the Fort Frances, Ontario native has compiled a record of 199-179-20-25. He also spent 25 games as the head coach of the Ottawa Senators during the 1995-96 season. Allison enjoyed a 10-year professional playing career in the AHL, IHL and in the NHL. The defenseman was signed by the Montreal Canadiens as a free agent in 1979.
- After signing with Peoria as an unrestricted free agent this summer, defenseman Scott Ford was named captain earlier this week. No stranger to a leadership role, Ford served as the captain for the Milwaukee Admirals last season. Ford tallied just 36 points (11g, 25 a) over 239 career games with Milwaukee, but has maintained a combined +38 rating since 2008-09.
- Eleven of Peoria’s 24 players were originally drafted by the St. Louis Blues including new additionsSergey Andronov (2009, 3rd round), Jaden Schwartz (2010, 1st round) and Sebastian Wannstrom (2010, 2nd round).
- Seven of Peoria’s 24 plyaers were born in the United States, while 14 were born in Canada. Andronov and Evgeny Grachev are both natives of Russia, while Wannstrom hails from Sweden.
- After scoring goals in Peoria’s first two games, Anthony Peluso has already tied the franchise record for most consecutive games to start the season with a goal. Julian Talbot most recently accomplished the two-game feat to start the 2008-09 season in back-to-back games against Iowa. Martin Kariya also did so to start the 2007-08 season while Colin Hemingway and Peter Sejna did so in Peoria’s first two games of the 2005-06 season. Prior to this season, Peluso recorded just 10 goals over 145 career AHL games. Last season, Peluso did not tally his second goal until Feb. 8 against Grand Rapids.
- The Rivermen travel to Chicago to take on the Wolves on Wednesday at 7 p.m. before they open their home schedule on Friday against the Rockford IceHogs. Listen to all 76 Rivermen games this season live on CD Country 107.9 FM (www.cd1079.net) or through the TuneIn Radio App on your smartphone or tablet. Follow game action on Twitter (@RivsGameday).