1990 Rivermen Hockey Team
FRONT ROW (L to R): Tom Tilley, Kelly Chase, David Bruce, Michel Mongeau, Dave Thomlinson, Dominic Lavoie, Nelson Emerson, Tony Twist, Randy Skarda
SECOND ROW (L to R): Pat Jablonski, Darwin McPherson, Yves Heroux, Tom Nash, Bruce Saurs (Owner), Bob Plager (Head Coach), Denis Cyr (General Manager), John Faginkrantz (Equipment Manager), Steve Tuttle, Alain Raymond, Guy Hebert
BACK ROW (L to R): Richard Pion, David O'Brien, Keith Osborne, Rob Robinson, Kevin Miehm, Andy Rymsha, Tony Hejna
Coached by Bob Plager, the Peoria Rivermen not only claimed their second IHL Turner Cup championship, but also set a world professional hockey record with 18 straight wins between Oct. 6, 1990 and Nov. 22, 1990.
The team, a farm club of the St. Louis Blues, finished with a 58-19-5 record and easily won its IHL title with 121 points.
In all, the team set 41 world, professional, league and franchise records while playing before
300,000 fans, making the Rivermen the most watched local team in Peoria sports history.
The Rivermen were led by four standout offensive performances.
David Bruce led the team with 64 goals and 62 assists for 116 points while Nelson Emerson was 36-79--115, Dave Thomlinson 53-54--107, and Michel Mongeau 41-65--106. Bruce was named the league's Most Valuable Player by the Hockey News while Plager was named Coach of the Year.
Emerson was named Rookie of the Year and Mongeau was voted the playoff Most Valuable Player after scoring 26 points in 19 playoff games with 10 goals and 16 assists.
In Cup playoffs, the Rivermen whipped Milwaukee four out of six games, took Phoenix in seven, and toppled Ft. Wayne in six for the final playoff record of 12-7.
Of the 34 players who appeared for Peoria in this historic season, 22 went on to play in the National Hockey League.