ROCKFORD, Ill. (WTVO/WQRF)–The IceHogs’ playoff fate is going down to the final day of the regular season. They missed a chance to clinch a playoff spot Saturday night when they lost to Manitoba 3-2 at the BMO while the Chicago Wolves, the team trying to overtake the IceHogs for the final playoff spot in the AHL’s Central Division, defeated Grand Rapids 4-1. That combination leaves the IceHogs’ magic number still at two.
The IceHogs need a win Sunday in Milwaukee against the Admirals or a Wolves loss in regulation Sunday at home against Manitoba to get into the playoffs.
Lukas Reichel accounted for both IceHogs’ goals Saturday scoring one in the first period and the other in the second period. The second goal had given the IceHogs a 2-1 lead at the time, but the Moose answered with a goal by Greg Meierles late in the second period to tie it up. The Moose then took the lead on a goal by Simon Lundmark at 8:01 of the third period.
The IceHogs pulled goaltender Arvid Soderblom for a man-advantage in the final three minutes, but they were unable to get the equalizer.
The IceHogs were 1-for-4 on the power play. They outshot the Moose 35-30.
Reichel’s two goals gave him 50 points on the season. He becomes the fifth player on the IceHogs to join the 50-point club along with Rocco Grimaldi (72), David Gust (58), Brett Seney (53) and Luke Philp (52). Before this season the IceHogs had never had four players reach the 50-point mark in one season let alone five.
A crowd of 6,339 fans turned out at the BMO for this game.
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