The Aeros used a fast and effective forecheck, solid play by their veterans and a great skating game by their defenseman to claim a 4-1 win in Game One last night vs. Peoria. When asked for the thing he liked the most about his team’s game, Aeros’ head coach Mike Yeo responded: “the fact that we can improve”.
Now that doesn’t mean he didn’t like their game – but he again talked about “the process” and trying to improve with each game during this playoff season. He said the Aeros’ puck management needs to improve and also that his club needs to be stronger “on pucks” in the offensive zone. With that said, I asked him about the Aeros’ forecheck in Game One, which led to a ton of Rivermen turnovers, equaling a plentiful assortment (weird phrase, I know) of great scoring chances for the Aeros. Here’s what he said…
Thus it will be important for the Aeros to stay with their game plan in Game Two, but it will also be crucial for them to match the desperation of a Rivermen club that sports multiple Calder Cup rings (Arsene, Mink, Oystrick). The Rivermen certainly don’t want to go down 0-2 and I’d be shocked if we don’t see that type of win-or-else mentality from the visitors tomorrow night.
Here are some nuggets from Game One:
- The Aeros got four assists from their defensemen in Game One (Noreau, Spurgeon, Prosser and Falk)
- The Aeros generated 8 power play opportunities, compared to just three for the Rivermen
- Aeros’ winger Patrick O’Sullivan scored his 14th career Calder Cup playoff goal
- The Aeros are now 10-6 in Game One scenarios in their Calder Cup playoff history
The Aeros participated in a full team practice today, and the Rivermen just jumped out on the ice (1:30 pm CST) for their skate. By my count, Peoria only has 20 skaters out there right now and I was told (but didn’t notice at the time) that defenseman Tyson Strachan and forward Stefan Della Rovere didn’t play in the 3rd period of last night’s game. I can’t tell if Della Rovere is on the ice today, but Strachan definitely isn’t.
I’ll have more tomorrow following each team’s morning skate.
– Aero Joe