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WALKER’S HAT TRICK NOT ENOUGH AS RIVERMEN FALL IN SHOOTOUT FRIDAY

forced overtime before falling 5-4 to the Thunderbolts Friday night in Peoria. Despite the loss, Peoria improves to 83 points in the SPHL standings at 37-7-9, clinching their fourth regular-season championship in the last five years and ties them with the SPHL record-holding 2015-16 Rivermen for the most points in a regular season.

Peoria started the scoring in the game’s first minute. Peoria winger Alec Hagaman carried into the left wing of the Evansville zone and sent a pass to Austin Vieth in the right circle. Vieth’s shot was turned away by Thunderbolts netminder Braeden Ostepchuk and wavered above the Thunderbolts crease. Peoria winger Pijus Rulevicius pounced on the loose puck and lofted it over Ostepchuk for a 1-0 lead at the 42-second mark of the first period.

Photo Credit: Dennis Sievers/Peoria Rivermen

To read the full recap, click here.