The Chicago Wolves have been Takin’ Care of Business lately.
The Wolves were victorious in both their games this past week and have won three straight as they now sit a point back of first place in the AHL’s Midwest Divison.
Thursday, December 13th –Chicago Wolves 4 Hamilton Bulldogs 3
Archibald, who has been sensational for the Wolves since being called up from the ECHL, opened the scoring with only 16 seconds left in the first period to send the Wolves to the locker room with a 1-0 lead after 20 minutes.
It was Archibald again in the middle frame, this time on the power play to give the Wolves a 2-0 lead. Just moments later Archibald used his hands for something other than scoring as he took on Bulldogs tough-guy Zack Stortini in an energetic-scrap that got the Wolves fan off their feet.
Wolves captain Darren Haydar scored to make it 3-0 just over one minute into the third period. The Bulldogs battled back with three goals of their own in the final period, however Andersson’s point shot that beat Bulldogs goaltender Cedrick Desjardins proved to be the game-winner as the Wolves hung on to seal the victory by a score of 4-3.
Arch-ade Fire: Archibald took over the Wolves lead for power play goals with his second of the year on the man-advantage. This was the first time the Newmarket, Ontario, native has had a multi-goal game in his AHL career.
The Great Wall of Climie: The Bulldogs outshot the Wolves by a count of 37-25, but goaltender Matt Climie stood stall, stopping 34 shots in his sixth straight start in net for the Wolves.
Back-to-Back: This marked the first time the Wolves have won back-to-back games since October 19th, when the team started the year with four straight wins.
Flashback: To find the last time the Canucks AHL affiliate played on December 13th you would have to go way back to 2008. Jason Krog had a goal and an assist and Karl Goehring made 31 saves as the Manitoba Moose defeated the Grand Rapids Griffins by a score of 4-2. Current Wolves captain Darren Haydar was captain of the Griffins, while former Nanaimo Clippers defenseman Jason Jozsa patrolled the blue-line for Grand Rapids.
Saturday, December 16th –Chicago Wolves 3 Lake Erie Monsters 2
Andrew Ebbett registered three points and Brett Sterling added two goals as the Wolves won their third straight game, defeating the Monsters 3-2 at Quicken Loans Arena in Cleveland, Ohio, Saturday night.
The Monsters opened the scoring 1:26 into the game, but the Wolves responded as Ebbett beat Monsters rookie-goalie Calvin Pickard to even things up. Exactly three minutes later Sterling tallied his first of the game on the power-play to make it 2-1 Wolves after one period.
Sterling added his second of the game just 2:34 into the second period to put the Wolves out front by a deuce. The Monsters cut the lead to 3-2 when All-Name team member David Van Der Gulik beat Climie with just under eight minutes remaining in the middle stanza.
It was all Monsters in the third period but Wolves goaltender Matt Climie stood tall and shut the door, sealing the win for the Wolves, stopping all 11 shots fired his way en route to a 30 save performance in his seventh straight start.
Goal Leader: With his two goals, Sterling moved ahead of Wolves forward Jordan Schroeder for the team-lead in goals with eight. Sterling also has the team lead in points with 16 (8-8-16).
History Repeats Itself: The last time Ebbett has registered three points in a game was almost two years ago to the day, back on December 18th, 2010. The Calgary, Alberta, native had a goal and two assists for the San Antonio Rampage in a 4-2 win over Oklahoma City. Former Canucks forward Brad Moran played for the Barons that night.
Helping Hands: Zack Kassian also registered two assists, while Chris Tanev and Mark Matheson added single-helpers on the night.
Shot Clock: Brett Sterling fired six shots on goal for the Wolves, who were outshot 32-21 by the Monsters for the game.
Flashback: On the same day last season, Eddie Lack stole the show with 40 saves in a 2-1 Wolves win over the Charlotte Checkers. Bill Sweatt and Jordan Schroeder each netted a goal and an assist for the Wolves. Former Penticton Vees stand-outs Justin Krueger and Zac Dalpe were in the lineup for the Checkers.
The Wolves (12-9-2-1) return home for a tilt against the Abbotsford Heat (Calgary, 15-5-3-3) Wednesday morning (game will start at 9:00 am PST). This Saturday the Wolves travel 180 miles around Lake Michigan for their final game before a four-day holiday break, a clash against division-rivals, the Grand Rapids Griffins (Detroit, 13-9-1-1). Both the Heat and Griffins lead their respective divisions.
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