Mikhail Berdin made 41 saves and four Manitoba players scored to shut out the IceHogs 4-0 and snap Rockford’s win streak at four games Friday at the BMO Harris Bank Center.
Berdin shined in net, helping the Moose kill off five penalties in his third victory in his last four outings. Michael Spacek had a goal and an assist, and Luke Green and C.J. Suess tallied power-play goals and Seth Griffith also found the back of the net. Sami Niku recorded two secondary assists.
Collin Delia stopped 22 of 26 shots as he allowed at least four goals in his last three starts and fourth overall in six outings. Defenseman Philipp Holm led all Rockford players with six shots on goal. Kris Versteeg, who returned after missing seven games with a hip injury, fired two shots on net.
Rockford started off strong in the opening minute when Dylan Sikura stole the puck from Leon Gawanke then sent a pass to Tyler Sikura, who fired wide of the net. MacKenzie Entwistle then had a chance right in front that also missed the cage.
After living in their own zone, Spacek lit the lamp for Manitoba at 8:33 when he picked up a loose puck in the slot and scored stick-side with a wrister.
Green put the Moose up 2-0 less than six minutes into the second period with a power play goal from the blue line past Delia, who was tangled up with Holm in the crease and never saw the shot. Suess then redirected Spacek’s shot past Delia to make it 3-0 Moose with 5:02 left in the frame for Manitoba’s second power play tally.
Reese Johnson gave the IceHogs some life when he raced out of the penalty box and had a 1-on-1 against Berdin only for the netminder to make a pad save. A minute later, Sikura had the best scoring chance of the night with a wide-open net on the power play, but Berdin made an excellent diving stick save to keep Rockford off the scoreboard.
Here's the ridiculous diving save by Manitoba Moose goaltender Mikhail Berdin on Rockford #IceHogs winger Dylan Sikura from tonight. Just wow. #Blackhawks #GoJetsGo @arcticicehockey pic.twitter.com/MD7d6CoeWh— Second City Hockey (@2ndCityHockey) November 9, 2019
Rockford started the third with 36 seconds remaining on a power play, and had no shots to show for it. Moments later Dennis Gilbert, who was playing in his first game back from his NHL call up, couldn’t settle a pass at the blue line by Tyler Sikura and Andrei Chibisov out raced Gilbert to the puck and send a pass to Griffith, who fired it by Delia only 2:01 into the third.
The IceHogs head east on Interstate 90 to Rosemont to face the Chicago Wolves (Golden Knights) on Sunday at Allstate Arena.