The good news was that the Rockford IceHogs picked up a standings point for the first time in six games on Wednesday at the Rockford MetroCentre. The bad news was that the IceHogs are still winless in six games thanks to a 2-1 shootout loss to the Milwaukee Admirals.
"It's definitly a start," winger Mike Blunden said. "It's definitly better than getting no points, but we're still on a six-game winless streak, so we just have to bear down and find a way to win."
Ending a seven-game personal pointless streak, winger Mike Blunden found the net at 7:37 in the third period with assists from Evan Brophey and Niklas Hjalmarsson to tie the game at one. It is the second straight contest against Milwaukee that the IceHogs have tied the Ads in the third frame to go to overtime.
The goal also ended a 105:04 minute scoreless streak for the Hogs stretching back to the first frame of the Nov. 8 game against Norfolk. And the power-play tally was the first one in 13 opportunities.
The loss is also the sixth straight game that the IceHogs have failed to score more than two goals. With a shrug, Blunden said he's not sure what the team needs to do now to get the offense going.
"I don't really know," he said. "I think we've been trying to find those answers for six games. I think we just have to go out there and shoot the puck."
In the shootout, Nick Spaling and Stephan Werner solved Antti Niemi, while only Petri Kontiola was able to put one past Drew MacIntyre.
"We played a good game and this weekend we have to come out and play again," Blunden said. "The shootout didn't go our way but we have to come out and be ready for Saturday."
In the first period, Milwaukee's Hugh Jessiman put the puck past Antti Niemi in a scrum in front of the net for the first score of the game at 19:17 on the power play. Nick Spaling and Cody Franson were credited with the assists.
Milwaukee finished the game 1-for-4 on the power play, while Rockford was 1-for-7. In his first shootout loss of the season, Niemi finished with 24 saves, while MacIntyre had 36 saves.