Collin Delia scored the first goal by a goaltender in the Rockford IceHogs’ AHL history on Friday night. The 27-year-old netminder also made 24 saves in a 3-1 win against the Texas Stars.
With the Texas Stars’ net empty in the final minute of the game, Delia was the last Rockford player to touch the puck before a Texas pass from behind the IceHogs’ net back toward the point went the length of the ice.
Delia is the 16th goaltender in AHL history to be credited with scoring a goal. He becomes the first since Max Lagace of the Chicago Wolves on May 25, 2019 at San Diego.
“I knew was the last one to touch it, but I didn’t know if anyone else saw it,” Delia said. “I don’t think it was technically a shot on net. I think it was going wide, but I just got a toe on it. I just couldn’t believe it went in and I got credit for it.
“I thought it was hilarious.”
Delia has a goal and an assist in his past three games. He had an assist in Rockford’s 4-3 shootout win against the Iowa Wild on Dec. 8.
“Just playing the puck actually a little bit more this year,” Delia said. “Getting a little bit more confident in that. The (defensemen) make it easy, they fan out and (I) just hit them. We’ve got great puck-moving defensemen and our forwards are flying up the ice.”
Delia is 4-3-1-0 with a 3.10 goals-against average and .900 save percentage in eight games in his fifth season with Rockford.
The IceHogs (11-9-1-1), the Chicago Blackhawks‘ AHL affiliate, are in third place in the Central Division. Rockford plays the second game of the back-to-back against Texas at 7 PM Saturday in Cedar Park.