Peoria, IL – The Peoria Rivermen scored first, led three separate times, and held on late to top the Quad City Storm 3-2 at Carver Arena Friday night. The win, Peoria’s sixth in a row, improves the Rivermen to 30-3-4 on the season, and drops their magic number to clinch a playoff berth to one point over the Storm before tomorrow night’s rematch at the TaxSlayer Center in Moline.


Newly acquired forward Austin Hervey netted a goal in his first game with the Rivermen while rookie winger Ben Blasko extended his SPHL-leading point streak to 14 games.

The scoreless deadlock was broken at the 8:35 mark of the first period when defenseman Kevin Patterson redirected a shot from the left circle by Ben Oskroba past the right shoulder of Storm goaltender Peter Di Salvo. Blasko was credited with the secondary assist to help give Patterson his sixth goal of the season and the Rivermen a 1-0 lead just under midway through the first.


The Storm answered to tie the game at the 15:49 mark of the first when Quad City winger Al Graves caught a rebound off of Peoria netminder Stephen Klein’s blocker and put it in to tie the game at 1-1.


Hervey scored his first goal as a member of the Rivermen and his fourth of the year at the 13:15 mark of the second period. Rivermen winger/defenseman Guillaume Naud found teammate Pijus Rulevicius with a pass just past the Storm blue line, and Rulevicius blasted a one-timer off the endboards. Hervey found the rebound and backhanded a shot into the net from the right circle to put Peoria ahead 2-1.


The Storm had a chance to tie the game again with just under three minutes left in the second when Quad City forward Phil Bronner had a breakaway into the Rivermen zone, but Klein was able to reject the initial shot along with two rebound attempts to hold the lead into the second intermission.

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Photo Credit: Dennis Sievers/Peoria Rivermen