Series Preview: Battle of I-94 To End 2023
The Port Huron Prowlers and Motor City Rockers will close out the calendar year 2023 with a three-in-three. The first two games will be at McMorran Place while a Sunday matinee will be hosted by Big Boy Arena.
The Prowlers were swept in their pre-Christmas series in Danbury. Port Huron’s offense failed to beat Connor McCollum in a 4-0 loss. The next night, they seemed destined for a similar fate, trailing 3-0 midway through the third; but Liam Freeborn and Brandon Picard pulled their team within one before Frank Schumacher tied it with an extra attacker in the final minute. The comeback only earned them a point as the Hat Tricks got a power play in overtime and Jacob Ratcliffe put home his second of the game. The Prowlers are 7-8-3 with 24 points, fourth in the Continental Division.
The Rockers were home last weekend and blew out the Elmira River Sharks in two straight games. TJ Delaney scored four times to overcome a Cody Rodgers hat trick and give Motor City an 8-4 win. 13 of the Rockers’ 16 skaters in the game had a point. The next night was even more lopsided as Nick Magill-Diaz led the way with four points and TJ Sneath put up a hat trick en route to a 9-1 win. Eight Rockers had multi-point nights. After snapping a five-game losing skid in a big way, Motor City maintains second place in the Empire Division at 11-5-3 with 34 points.
SEASON SERIES (MOTOR CITY LEADS 4-2)
Oct. 20 @ Port Huron: Rockers 3, Prowlers 2 (OT)
Oct. 21 @ Port Huron: Rockers 3, Prowlers 2
Nov. 10 @ Motor City: Rockers 7, Prowlers 1
Nov. 11 @ Port Huron: Rockers 3, Prowlers 2
Dec. 8 @ Port Huron: Prowlers 5, Rockers 3
Dec. 9 @ Motor City: Prowlers 5, Rockers 4
Port Huron trailed 4-1 heading into the third period in enemy territory and was being shut down by Trevor Babin despite a 30-18 shots advantage. Babin was forced out and Ricky Gonzalez came in to begin the final frame and the Prowlers continued to pour it on, climbing back with four goals in the period to get the win 5-4 in regulation. Matt Graham scored twice including the game winner. Final shots were 41-23 in favor of Port Huron.
PLAYERS TO WATCH
Prowlers - Liam Freeborn (F) - Freeborn ended a career-high three-game point drought with a goal and an assist Saturday in Danbury. He’s an important piece in getting Port Huron’s offense back on track.
Rockers - TJ Sneath (F) - Since signing just before the last series between these teams earlier this month, Sneath has become an offensive force for Motor City. He has a point in all five games he’s played, is averaging a goal per game and scored a hat trick in the Rockers’ last game.
If he dresses in all 3 games, Matt Graham (PHP) will become the first player with 300 games played in a Prowlers' uniform…Scott Coash (MCR) leads his team with 13 goals. None of his teammates have more than 7…The Prowlers have lost 3 straight games, their last win was Dec. 9 at Motor City…The Rockers set a new franchise record with 8 goals in their first game of the weekend last Friday against Elmira. They then broke that record the next night with 9.
Dec. 29, 7:05 P.M. at McMorran Place (Port Huron, MI)
Dec. 30, 7:05 P.M. at McMorran Place (Port Huron, MI)
Dec. 31, 2:05 P.M. at Big Boy Arena (Fraser, MI)
Tickets for the first two games are available at phprowlers.com/tickets or by calling the box office at 810-985-6166.