Pirri, Smith Help Hogs Win Illinois Lottery Cup
Rockford, Ill. - Brandon Pirri and Ben Smith combined for 10 points and sparked a sold out BMO Harris Bank Center Friday evening as the Rockford IceHogs defeated the Chicago Wolves 7-3 in the IceHogs home finale.
Smith marked the second IceHogs hat trick of the season to go along with an assist, while Pirri tied an IceHogs all-time mark and AHL season-high with six points, including one goal and five helpers en route to the Hogs victory.
Rockford peppered Chicago goaltending with a franchise record 58 shots on goal, including 25 in the second period. Shawn Lalonde also set an all-time team record with a +6 plus/minus rating.
Rockford's onslaught of goals began on their second power play of the contest and with 2:17 remaining in the first period. Down a goal, tic-tac-toe passing from Pirri to Lalonde to Smith on the doorstep resulted in the Hogs first tally. It marked Smith's 20th goal on the campaign, which set a career high.
Just 1:42 into the second period and with three second remaining on a Chicago power play, Pirri stripped the puck at center ice and broke free. The center capitalized on the breakaway opportunity, finishing top-shelf for his 21st of the season, and marking his second point of the night.
Less than a minute later, Rockford came back with another tally, this time coming from reigning AHL Player of the Week, Rostislav Olesz. The forward picked-up a pass from winger Kyle Beach and finished top-shelf as well, giving the Hogs a 3-1 advantage. Pirri also assisted on the play for his third point of the contest.
Chicago cut into the Hogs lead while on their third power-play opportunity. A Brad Hunt shot through traffic was deflected by Eric Kattelus off the glove of Hutton and into the back of the net to bring the score to 3-2.
With 44.1 seconds remaining in the middle frame, a Pirri shot from the point was blocked down by Climie, but Smith was located in front of the net to pick up the rebound and stickhandle around the sprawled out goaltender to up the Hogs advantage to 4-2.
Joe Cannata came in net for the final period for the Wolves, but he couldn't subdue the Hogs scoring efforts.
Less than three minutes into the final frame, Beach potted the fifth Hogs goal when he one-timed a Joakim Nordstrom pass over Cannata for his 16th goal on the campaign.
Hats went flying on to the BMO Harris Bank Center ice as Smith completed his hat trick at the 7:57 mark of the third period. Smith picked up a rebound from a Pirri shot, and finished top-shelf over Cannata for his first career hat trick. The goal marked Pirri's fourth assist of the night.
Pirri's record-setting sixth point came at the 16-minute mark of the third stanza when he was credited with the secondary assist on Morin's team-leading 29th goal of the season. Smith added the primary helper for his fourth and final point of the night.
Jim Vandermeer capped the scoring with 29 seconds remaining in the game when scored on the power play.
The Wolves opened the scoring at the 8:30 mark of the opening period. With the puck in the Hogs zone, Brett Sterling snatched the puck from defenseman Ryan Stanton's possession and squeaked it under IceHogs goaltender Carter Hutton to give Chicago the 1-0 advantage.
With 6,228 in attendance tonight, it marked the fifth sellout of the season at the BMO Harris Bank Center, which set a franchise-record for average attendance of 4,515 fans per game.
• Discuss this story on the American Hockey League message board...
American Hockey League Stories from April 13, 2013
- Griffins Clinch Playoff Berth Despite Overtime Loss - Grand Rapids Griffins
- Rockford Grinds out Win over Milwaukee - Rockford IceHogs
- Monsters Defeat Hamilton Again for Fifth Straight Win - Cleveland Monsters
- Akey in OT - Adirondack Phantoms
- Checkers Clinch Playoff Spot in Chicago - Charlotte Checkers
- Falcons Celebrate Division Title, Fall To Bruins - Springfield Falcons
- Brett Connolly's Hat Trick Lifts the Crunch - Syracuse Crunch
- Rivermen Win Seventh Straight vs. Grand Rapids - Peoria Rivermen
- Rampage Toppled at Houston, 4-1 - San Antonio Rampage
- Record Crowd Sees Aeros Roll over Rampage 4-1 - Houston Aeros
- Wolves Earn Vital Two Points with Shootout Win over Charlotte - Chicago Wolves
- Sharks Grab Point in OT Loss to Admirals on Fan Appreciation Night - Worcester Sharks
- Monarchs Hunt(Er) Bears for Victory - Manchester Monarchs
- Phantoms win in overtime ovet Whale - Connecticut Whale
- Monsters Edge Bulldogs 3-2 - Hamilton Bulldogs
- Vatanen's OT Winner Moves Norfolk up in Standings - Norfolk Admirals
- Amerks Fall to Crunch in Syracuse, 5-1 - Rochester Americans
- Kings Sign Nick Shore - Manchester Monarchs
- Monarchs Hold off Bears' Comeback - Hershey Bears
- Penguins Bottle-Up IceCaps - St. John's IceCaps
- Turner Elson Assigned to Abbotsford - Abbotsford Heat
- Bruins Blank Falcons 2-0 - Providence Bruins
- Penguins Clinch Playoff Berth with Shutout of IceCaps - Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Penguins
- Penguins Heading to Playoffs for 11th Straight Season - Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Penguins
- Devils Downed During Military Appreciation Night - Albany Devils
- B-Sens Dominate Devils, 5-0 - Binghamton Senators
- Flames Recall Centre Ben Street - Abbotsford Heat
- Griffins Host Rivermen for Regular Season Home Finale - Grand Rapids Griffins
- American Hockey League Announces Suspensions - AHL
- Youds Sent Back to Toledo - Rockford IceHogs
- Flames Recall Akim Aliu from Abbotsford - Abbotsford Heat
- B-Sens Recall Forward Jack Downing from Elmira - Binghamton Senators
- Falcons Game Preview: Springfield Vs. Providence, Game #72 - Springfield Falcons
- Phoenix Coyotes Assign Lucas Lessio to Portland Pirates - Portland Pirates
- IceCaps Release Matthew Kirzinger from ATO - St. John's IceCaps
- Heat Blank Marlies in Front of 6503 Fans - Abbotsford Heat
- Marlies Clinch Calder Cup Playoff Spot - Toronto Marlies
- Pirri, Smith Help Hogs Win Illinois Lottery Cup - Rockford IceHogs
The opinions expressed in this release are those of the organization issuing it, and do not necessarily reflect the thoughts or opinions of OurSports Central or its staff.
Other Recent Rockford IceHogs Stories
- Ads Surge Late to Sail Away with 8-2 Win
- Ads Use Three-Goal First to Punch Hole Through Hogs
- Hogs Host Alumni Night, Dri-Fit Quarter Zip Giveaway Saturday
- Meet IceHogs Alumni & Win Blackhawks Tickets Friday at Owly Oop
- Delia Dials In, Schroeder Stars in Shootout to Defeat Wolves