ROCKFORD, Ill. — Matthew Highmore scored 3:54 into overtime to cap the Rockford IceHogs’ 3-2 comeback win over the Iowa Wild on Saturday.
Down 2-0 with 2:30 remaining in the third period, Lucas Carlsson and Tyler Sikura tallied two goals 28 seconds apart to send the game to overtime. Highmore skated into the offensive zone up the right side on a 2-on-1 with Nicolas Beaudin and fired a shot past Mat Robson to send 3,464 into a frenzy at the BMO Harris Bank Center.
Kevin Lankinen stopped 30 of 32 shots in his second straight start for Rockford (4-5), who was without its biggest offensive threat in Dylan Sikura as he served his one-game suspension for a high-sticking incident late in Wednesday’s game.
Kyle Rau and Colton Beck scored power-play goals in the first and second periods, respectively, for Iowa (7-1-2-1). Robson held the IceHogs off the scoreboard almost the entire game with 34 saves.
Carlsson blasted a one-timer from Ian McCoshen with 2:30 left in the third period to cut the deficit in half. The goal stood after a review for goaltender interference. Carlsson followed with another shot on net that Tyler Sikura was able to get his stick on to redirect the puck past Robson.
Iowa pushed to regain the lead and end the game in regulation with four shots, including Gerald Mayhew’s best chance on the night but Lankinen somehow made the stop. A scrum ensued then Alexandre Fortin was booked for boarding with 22 seconds remaining, and the IceHogs had to kill off the penalty for the opening 1:38 in overtime.
Rockford limited Iowa to only two shots on the man advantage in overtime and Lankinen made a big stop on Mayhew before Highmore buried the winner.
With Adam Boqvist called up to the NHL, Chad Krys slotted into the top pairing role with McCoshen. Krys struggled a bit in the expanded role, including a fall in the opening period leading to a 2-on-1 rush but Beck’s shot went wide... The IceHogs went 0-for-4 on the power, including a full two-minute 5-on-3 opportunity when they only recorded two shots... Rockford head coach Derek King has found a line he likes with Anton Wedin, Jacob Nilsson and Brandon Hagel. The trio was the second line Saturday, and combined for 10 shots with Wedin having half of them for a team high... Rockford’s six defensemen were all left-handed shots as right-hander Jack Ramsey, who was called up from the ECHL, sat out.
Rockford hosts the Chicago Wolves (Golden Knights) at 4 p.m. Sunday.