ROCKFORD, Ill. (WTVO/WQRF) — The Rockford IceHogs scored first for the third consecutive game and Collin Delia made 40 saves on Monday afternoon, but the effort ultimately came up short in a 3-1 loss to the visiting Laval Rocket at the BMO Harris Bank Center.
Defenseman Philip Holm scored his first goal since returning to North America 7:02 into the first period. Jacob Nilsson entered the zone wide and found Philip Holm open in the high slot, who beat Rocket goaltender, Cayden Primeau, to put the IceHogs up 1-0.
The lone tally wasn’t enough, though, as Laval buried two goals in the second and added one in the third to pull away. Alex Belize tied the game 5:52 into the middle frame and Lukas Vejdemo scored the game-winning goal just under three minutes later. Finally, the Rocket’s Charles Hudon jumped in on the action 15:05 into the third to help secure the victory.
Delia turned away 40 of 43 pucks, which was six saves shy of his career-high total, while Primeau finished the night with 21 saves on 22 shots. The IceHogs drop to 0-3-0-0, and the Rocket improve to 1-3-0-0.
“It’s never fun to start the season 0-3, said IceHogs defenseman Philip Holm after the game . “We have a talented group, a lot of good players and we believe in each other and we stick up for each other in the locker room so we just try to get it going here.”
“It just sucks to lose, but at the end of the day we have to come together as a group,” said IceHogs defenseman Adam Boqvist. “You know it’s a new team, a lot of new players in there a lot of rookies.”
“We’re not a good team right now,” said IceHogs coach Derek King. “We’re not a team. Team is the key word there. I’d like to use the excuse we don’t have a lot of games yet under our belts to kind of figure out lines and stuff but we’re just not, we’re just not quite there.”