ROCKFORD, Ill.---The Chicago Wolves couldn’t find the equalizer in the third period and fell to the Rockford Icehogs 2-1 in an Illinois Lottery Cup match Friday night at the MetroCentre.
Wolves defensemen Nolan Baumgartner scored Chicago’s only goal of the game. Rockford goaltender Alexander Salak (4-6-0) held off a late charge by the Wolves and finished with 28 saves.
Rockford (21-23-1-4) opened up scoring at 3:19 of the first period when right wing Ben Smith rebounded a shot by center Peter LeBlanc and knocked the puck through the legs of Chicago goaltender Eddie Lack.
Baumgartner was knocked down in the crease after receiving a pass from forward Anton Rodin, but stayed with it, got back to his feet and sent the puck into the back of the net on a power play at 12:45 of the first period. Rodin and Steve Reinprecht earned assists on the play for Chicago (26-18-1-3).
After Lack made two terrific saves early in the seond period, Rockford defenseman Brian Fahey took back the lead 2-1 with a slapshot from the top of the ice at 1:26 on a power play in the second period. Lack was screened by IceHogs captain Brandon Segal on the play.
Lack (12-12-3) stopped 27 of 29 shots while seeing his three-game winning streak come to a close.
The Wolves continue their back-to-back slate against the Icehogs at 7 p.m. Saturday at the MetroCentre. The Wolves return to Allstate Arena at 7 p.m. Wednesday against Grand Rapids.
Chicago 1 0 0 --1
Rockford 1 1 0 --2
First Period---1, Rockford, Smith 14 (LeBlanc, Hayes), 3:19 pp; 2, Chicago, Baumgartner 2 (Rodin, Matheson), 12:45 pp. Penalties---Stanton, Rockford (hooking), 0:24; Baumgartner, Chicago (goaltender interference), 1:58; Clackson, Chicago (roughing), 9:08; Segal, Rockford (roughing), 9:08; Lavin, Rockford (interference), 11:55; Olesz, Rockford (roughing), 13:23; Connauton, Chicago (unsportsmanlike conduct), 20:00.
Second Period---3, Rockford, Fahey 3 (Lalonde, Segal), 1:26 pp. Penalties---Roussel, Chicago (unsportsmanlike conduct), 7:57; Roussel, Chicago (fighting), 14:33; Bollig, Rockford (charging), 14:33; Flick, Rockford (fighting), 14:33; Fahey, Rockford (interference), 17:07.
Third Period---None. Penalties---Olesz, Rockford (high-sticking), 17:03.
Shots on goal---Chicago: 12-8-8--28. Rockford: 11-14-4--29. Power plays---Chicago: 1-6; Rockford: 2-3. Goalies--Chicago, Lack (27-29). Rockford, Salak (27-28). A---4,501. Referee---Jamie Koharski. Linesmen—Al Stensland and Brian Oliver.