The Rockford IceHogs finished the month of October with a record of 7-3 good for 14 points and 1st place in the Central Division of the American Hockey League (AHL). Unfortunately, they started November with a loss, but they still retain their 1st place spot.
After starting the season with a sizzling 6-1 record, the IceHogs have lost 3 of their last 4 games. They also endured a tough stretch where they played 6 games in 9 days.
Coach Jeremy Colliton is hesitant to blame fatigue for the recent troublesome patch. He acknowledges that the team has gone through a busy stretch, but is quick to state that they must overcome those obstacles and play through all. Even with the recent dip, there are still plenty of reasons for positivity.
Goalie Jean-Francois Berube is 8th the AHL with a Goals Against Average of 2.13. He’s also tied for 1st in Wins and has a very respectable 92.3% Save Percentage. (which is the highest for any goalie who has played as many games as Berube).
On the offensive side, there are no IceHogs in the top 10 of Goals, Assists or Points. Matthew Highmore is tied for 2nd in Power Play Goals. Erik Gustafsson is tied for 3rd with 3 Goals and 10 points for a Defenseman.
My “Stick to Click” for the season was rookie Defenseman Darren Raddysh. So far, he has 1 goal and 2 assists for 3 points on 16 total shots, with a +/- of 4.
As a team, the IceHogs lead the AHL with 3 shorthanded goals. Just as impressive, the IceHog have not allowed a shorthanded goal. They also have the 5th lowest total penalty minutes.
It’s a little unfair to judge the team too harshly, just like nobody should have gotten overexcited about their hot start. With a new coaching staff and 9 rookies, the IceHogs are still trying to find their groove and the right combinations.
The team gets to enjoy a bit of a breather right now, as they last played on November 3 and won’t play until November 9. Then they have a hectic 3 days at Iowa, back home against San Antonio and finishing in Milwaukee.