St. Paul, MN The Houston Aeros (7-6-1-2, 17 points) defeated the Rockford IceHogs (6-8-0-1, 13 points) 3-2 on Sunday night in front of 11,175 fans at Xcel Energy Center. 

Aeros rookie forward Johan Larsson scored twice, including a shorthanded goal halfway through the third period for the win. Houston goalie Matt Hackett (4-5-2) stopped 29 of 31 in the win, including 15 saves in the second period. Right wing Justin Fontaine added a goal, as Houston improved to 3-3-1-2 at home this season. Rockford goalie Carter Hutton (5-6-1) stopped 33 of 36 shots in the defeat.

IceHogs Ben Smith and Adam Clendening each scored a power-play goal in the third, pulling Rockford within a goal. Houston will play in San Antonio on Friday at 7:30 p.m., then return home to host Abbotsford next Sunday at 5:05 p.m. at Toyota Center.

Houston opened the scoring with the only goal of the first period at 12:35. Defenseman Chay Genoway found right wing Justin Fontaine in the high slot.

Fontaine snapped a wrist shot past Carter Hutton for his fifth goal of the season. Left wing Kris Foucault added an assist on the power-play goal for the 1-0 lead.

The Aeros doubled up the IceHogs at 5:12 of the second period. Forwards Jason Zucker and Charlie Coyle helped set up Johan Larsson s fourth goal of the year. Larsson picked up a rebound in the Rockford crease and knocked it past Hutton for the 2-0 lead.

In the third, the IceHogs closed the gap with a power-play goal at 9:21, trimming the deficit to 2-1. Forward Ben Smith slipped a rebound past Matt Hackett for the Hogs first goal of the night. Adam Clendening and Martin St. Pierre each had an assist on the goal. Houston countered just 40 seconds later at 10:01.

Larsson picked off the puck in the IceHogs zone and sent a backhand shot past Hutton for his second goal of the night and a 3-1 Aeros lead. Rockford inched back into the game with a power-play goal at 10:53 by Clendening. St. Pierre and Smith each had an assist on the Clendening s second goal of the year for the final score of 3-2 in favor of Houston.

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