Sunday afternoon brought us the mystery puck off of the head of Mitch Love for a goal against Chicago. Tonight against Iowa featured a Jesse Schultz goal on a shot that wasn’t a shot and a John Lammers goal on a puck that grazed his shorts for the game winner against Iowa. Wild things are happening for the Aeros. Wild, wild things.
Trailing 1-0 to the Iowa Chops after one period, and before a crowd of 3339, and looking rather sloppy, the Aeros came out for the second and were quickly hit with two penalties, putting the Chops on a 5-x-3 power play for the first two-and-a-half minutes of the period. But the Aeros escaped and kept the Chops from scoring. Then the Aeros got the Chops into the penalty box, and the Aeros power play took over.
Anyone who watched the Aeros last season would find this hard to believe, but the Aeros are excelling on the power play this season, and at 12:03 of the second, Matt Beaudoin backhanded a wrist shot past the Iowa goalie to tie the game at 1-1. Then at 15:30 Krys Kolanos fired in a shot on the power play to put the Aeros up 2-1.
With the score tied at 2-2 at 1:25 of the third and the Aeros again on the power play, Jesse Schultz saw Robbie Earl on the other side of the goal. So he sent the puck that way. Only Earl never got the puck.
“I saw Robbie Earl open on the other side of the net and I was trying to pass it through the defenseman to him,” Schultz said. “And [the defenseman] went down to try and block it and it went off his skate and through the goalie’s legs.”
Just like that, the Aeros were up 3-2, only to give up the tying goal nearly five minutes later. But at 15:10 of the third, the Aeros were once again on the power play and Kurtis Foster was on the point with the puck and fired the puck toward the goal. John Lammers crashed the net for the rebound. It appeared that the puck hit the outside of the net and bounced out only to glance off of John Lammers and into the goal.
“I was just going to the net,” Lammers said, “and it ended up going off of my pants and went into the net. I didn’t even touch it with my stick. So it ended up just kind of a lucky goal, but that’s what happens when you go the net.”
And like that, the Aeros had defeated the Iowa Chops 4-3 for their fifth straight win, which is a season high winning streak. The win moved the Aeros record for the season to 27-21-1-8 (63 points) and put them in sole possession of third place in the AHL West. They’re one point behind Rockford, and two points ahead of fourth place Chicago. Iowa is in fifth place with 59 points.
The Aeros take on Iowa again on Saturday night at Toyota Center with the game set for 7:35.
MISCELLANEOUS GAME NOTES:
Coming into the game, the Aeros had the AHL’s fifth-ranked power play – yes, I know that’s really hard to believe. The Aeros went 4-for-6 on the power play last night. They’re now eight for their last ten power plays against Iowa, and for the season, the Aeros have scored on 14 of 28 power plays against the Chops.
“Our power play has just been good lately,” Coach Kevin Constantine said after the game. “We went on the road, and I thought the reason we were a better offensive team on the road was our power play was pretty good. It’s just more being in a rhythm with our power play than it is anything to do with Iowa.”
“Our power play is kind of carrying us right now,” Schultz said. “And we’re just going to ride it as long as we can.”
They may need to keep riding it as neither Schultz nor Constantine was much pleased by the rest of the team’s play.
“It probably wasn’t our best game, but we just found a way to win,” Schultz said.
“We looked a little lethargic to start tonight, but we did enough to win,” Constantine said, damning the team with faint praise.
The Aeros now have two 20 goal scorers for the season as Krys Kolanos’ goal gave him 20 for the season. Corey Locke also has 20 goals. Jesse Schultz has 18 goals so far this season. The Aeros only had two 20 goals for all of last season.
Schultz’ goal gives him five game point streak (6-1=7). And Corey Locke has a three game point streak after his two assists tonight (1-5=6). Coming into the game, Locke was the AHL’s fifth ranked scorer, and after tonight, he’s got 59 points (20-39=59). He is only three assists away from tying his career high of 42.
Mr. Prediction, the Chron’s Andrew Ferraro, wants me to let everyone know that he said the winner of this game would be the team that scored the game’s second goal. And that team was the Aeros and they did get the win. However, I need to point out that late in the third period, he said the game was going to go to OT, and that didn’t happen.
I only did so-so on my pregame predictions. I was off on the starting goalie. It was Nolan Schaefer instead of Barry Brust. I was off on the starting line – it was Locke/Kolanos/Beaudoin instead of Love/Ryznar/Kassian – and Matt Kassian did not score a goal as I predicted.
However, Krys Kolanos, did score a goal, as I predicted. The Aeros did win, as I predicted. The Aeros did score four goals, as I predicted. Sure the Chops got three goals when I predicted one, but I think I did pretty damn good with that.
To play us out tonight is a song/video that I think works perfectly with the Aeros dominating power play. So here's Oasis with the loud, bombastic "D'You Know What I Mean?"
Oh, and Rob, I got the receipt. Thanks again.