ROCHESTER, MN – The Rochester Grizzlies held off a feisty Milwaukee Power squad for the second time this weekend. Despite giving up the first goal of the game, Rochester came back to score three in a row and hold on for a 3-2 victory on home ice. What seemed like a brief losing streak is now in the rear window as that win marked seven in a row for the red-hot Grizzlies.
Saturday’s contest seemed like a slower start for the home team, as Milwaukee outshot Rochester seven to four in the first period. Local kid Tate Cothern looked sharp in the first period in what was his third start of the season and second on home ice.
The Power would open the scoring, however, as at 2:47 of the second period, Patrick Toomey finished off a 2-on-0 and tapped in an easy goal past Cothern. That marked the fifth time this season out of 14 games Rochester has given up the first goal. It took a little while, but the Grizzlies finally solved Power goalie Adam Prokop. Zach Laurila would catch a break on the man advantage as he beat a sprawling Prokop after the puck bounced off the back boards and out in front. That marked the first power-play goal of the weekend for Rochester and Laurila’s fifth of the season. Spencer Klotz would make it 2-1 just under two minutes later, finishing off a tic-tac-toe passing play between Ryan Berglund and Ben Oakland for an easy tap-in goal.
The Grizzlies would get some breathing room at 11:16 of the third as Ben Tschida scored his second of the weekend. Tschida found a loose puck off a rebound and beat Prokop, who dropped his stick in the chaos. Max Mudge would score a late one for Milwaukee to make it interesting, but Rochester would hold on.
Cothern stopped 26 of 28 to improve to 3-0 on the season. Rochester is now 12-2 on the year, good for 24 points, and still on top of the Central Division. The Grizzlies are back home next weekend for two games against the Wausau Cyclones as puck drop is 7:05 PM Friday and Saturday.