DES MOINES, IOWA – The Chicago Wolves became the first AHL team to win a game Monday afternoon against the Iowa Wild at Wells Fargo Arena as they recorded a 2-1 victory. The penalty kill would prove to be the difference-maker in the win, as the Wolves held the league’s fifth-best power play to zero goals on the man advantage.
Chicago once again opened up the game’s scoring as it recorded a shorthanded goal for the second consecutive game. T.J. Tynan broke the puck into the Wild zone and then dropped it to Tobias Lindberg who poked one in behind goaltender Steve Michalek for the 1-0 lead at just 2:39 of the first period. With the first AHL goal of 2018 by any player, Lindberg continues his goal-every-other-game streak.
Tynan continued to shine on the kill as he broke the puck in just as the penalty to Chris Casto was expiring. The center passed to Mackenzie MacEachern to give the visitors a 2-0 lead before seven minutes had ticked off the clock.
Though the second period ended with the same score as the first, 2-0 Chicago, the Wolves were able to match their shot total from the first period with 12 shots on goal. Additionally, they made Maxime Lagace’s job in net easy as the Wolves, who took five penalties through the opening 40 minutes, held the Wild to fewer than 10 SOG each period (9, then 7).
Mario Lucia got one back for the Wild halfway through the third as his spin move was enough to finally beat Lagace. Even with the Wild being gifted a late power play with 5:05 remaining in regulation, the Wolves penalty kill would stand strong and finish the afternoon a perfect 6-for-6.
Even pulling Michalek for the extra attacker proved futile for the Iowa Wild as the Chicago Wolves won the first game of 2018 2-1. Monday’s win improved the team to 15-12-5-2 on the season and pushed their point streak to 11 games. Lagace made 25 saves in his eighth win of the season.
The Chicago Wolves next play the Manitoba Moose at home Wednesday. Puck drop at the Allstate Arena between the AHL’s two hottest teams is slated for 7 p.m. As always, be sure to follow @SinBinWolves on Twitter for current news and game updates.