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Monsters and Aeros
The last time these two teams met at Quicken Loans Arena (December 12th), the Aeros quickly grabbed a 2-0 lead off their first of shots of the game. Lake Erie battled back by scoring five straight en route to a 5-2 victory.
In Houston on January 7th, the Aeros spelled revenge by blanking the Monsters, 3-0, at the Toyota Center.
In that game, Houston took a 1-0 lead off Jean-Michel Daoust’s penalty shot goal 13:08 of the first period. In the middle frame, Robbie Earl set up Chad Rau with a goal at the 14:21 mark, before Earl scored a power play tally at 16:31 of the period.
On Sunday the Monsters will meet the Peoria Rivermen for the third time this season.
The Rivermen enter this weekend's action as the West Division's top team. They own a 26-14-2-1 record, while they've won six of their last 10 games.
Peoria is led by former Monster T.J. Hensick, who has 37 points (10G, 27A) in 31 games this season.
Lake Erie is 0-1-0-1 against Peoria this season.
Setting Franchise Marks
Thursday night’s victory over the Rochester Americans marked Lake Erie’s fifth straight win, tying a franchise record.
A win for the Monsters on Saturday would set a franchise record for consecutive wins and tie a season high for consecutive home victories (three).
With a roughing minor in Thursday’s game against Rochester, Patrick Bordeleau became Lake Erie’s all-time leader in penalty minutes (214). Bordeleau, who has spent parts of the last three seasons with Lake Erie, passed former Monster Mitch Love in the all-time ranks.
Olver on Fire
Rookie center Mark Olver has been the offensive catalyst in Lake Erie’s recent success. During the team’s current five-game winning streak, Olver has recorded at least a goal in each outing (6G, 1A), including two game winners (Jan. 16 at Rochester, Jan. 20 vs. Rochester).
Olver leads the Monsters in goals (17), while his 28 points rank second on the club.
Between the Pipes
Goaltender John Grahame has backstopped all five of Lake Erie’s wins in the team’s current streak. Grahame’s five consecutive wins is the most of any Lake Erie goaltender this season. He has won seven of his last nine starts for the Monsters.
The NHL veteran of 224 games owns a 10-7-2 record with one shutout, a GAA of 2.25 and a .918 save percentage in 20 games played with Lake Erie this season.
Home Sweet Home
On Saturday the Monsters will play game three of a five-game home stand.
Tuesday’s game against Oklahoma City began a stretch in which Lake Erie plays 12 of 13 games on home ice.
The Monsters are 12-5-2-2 at Quicken Loans Arena.
Broadcaster Ben Holden previews this weekend's matchups:
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