Road Trip Begins with First OTL

Photos courtesy of Houston Aeros
The Lake Erie Monsters picked up one much-needed point in the standings on Friday and now sit six points behind fourth-placed Manitoba for the last playoff spot in the North Division. The visiting Monsters led the Aeros until midway through the third period before eventually falling 3-2 in overtime. It was the first overtime loss of the season for the team. Lake Erie is now 31-33-1-7 with eight games left to play in the 2009-10 regular season.

Houston outshot Lake Erie 10-6 in the first period, but it wasn't until nearly the midway point that the home team would get on the scoreboard. Jaime Sifers scored at 8:59, assisted by Jon DiSalvatore and Petr Kalus.

Ray Macias knotted the score at the 16:31 mark of the opening frame. Zach Cohen and T.J. Hensick assisted on the game-tying score. Playing in just his second professional game, rookie Cohen recorded his first point as a pro with the helper.

The first period ended with the teams tied at one goal apiece.

It looked as though the second period might close with the same score, until Brian Willsie scored with two minutes to go in the period. The go-ahead goal was assisted by Darren Haydar and Ryan Stoa on the power play.

The Monsters took their one-goal lead into the third and held onto it until the 11:23 mark. DiSalvatore scored on the power play, again tying the score with less than nine minutes remaining in the game. Jamie Fraser and Ryan Gunderson were credited with the assists.

The rest of the third passed with neither team lighting the lamp, sending the game into overtime.

It looked as though a shootout might be in the cards in Houston until the Aeros netted the game-winner with less than a minute-and-a-half left in the five-minute sudden death overtime frame. Robbie Earl won the game for his Aeros, assisted by Maxim Noreau and Chad Rau.

Monsters goalie Tyler Weiman posted 24 saves on 27 shots in the loss. Anton Khudobin stopped all but two of the 25 shots he faced.

The Monsters will travel to San Antonio to play a pair of games to wrap up the weekend, beginning at 8:00 p.m. on Saturday.

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