GRAND RAPIDS GRIFFINS 4 at Chicago Wolves 5
Dec. 21, 2017
ROSEMONT, Ill. – The Chicago Wolves scored five unanswered goals to erase a 3-0 deficit and then held on for a 5-4 victory against the Grand Rapids Griffins on Thursday afternoon at Allstate Arena.
Chicago has won six consecutive games to even its record at 12-12-4-1, while the Griffins have one point in their last three outings and fall to 10-15-1-3.
Grand Rapids jumped out to a 3-0 lead 17:04 into the hockey game but Chicago responded with a 5-0 run over a 17:11 stretch spanning the second and third periods.
Tyler Bertuzzi (2-1—3) and Ben Street (0-3—3) both posted three-point outings. The Wolves received markers from five different scorers to snap Grand Rapids’ four-game winning streak at Allstate Arena.
Grand Rapids continues its pre-holiday three-road-games-in-three-nights stretch tomorrow against the Iowa Wild at 8 p.m. EST.
Grand Rapids struck first 7:33 into the opening period on Colin Campbell’s sixth goal of the season. From the left half-wall, Brian Lashoff’s shot was redirected to Dominic Turgeon in the slot. Turgeon’s effort was turned aside by Max Lagace, but Campbell, staked out by the left post was in position to send the puck into a wide-open goal.
Just 13 seconds later, the Griffins doubled their advantage. Receiving a pass from Street near the red line, Bertuzzi gained the zone on the left side and made a cross-ice delivery to Robbie Russo. The third-year blueliner skated in alone in the right circle and blasted a shot over a sprawling netminder.
Grand Rapids benefited from a full two minutes of a 5-on-3 advantage to extend its lead to 3-0. With crisp puck movement throughout the power play, Matt Lorito at the bottom of the right circle slid a pass across the goal mouth to Bertuzzi on the opposite side of the net who made no mistake into an exposed cage.
Chicago matched Grand Rapids’ three-goal outburst in the first period by exploding for four tallies of its own in the second. Brett Sterling at 4:28 got the Wolves on the board. Skating in on a 3-on-1, Sterling’s shot from the right circle got a piece of Tom McCollum before going over the line.
Scooter Vaughan cut Chicago’s deficit to one by scoring his first goal of the campaign with 12:06 remaining.
Paul Thompson evened the score with 5:09 to go in the period. T.J. Tynan collected Griffin Reinhart’s misguided attempt from the left point and delivered the puck to Thompson, who popped the puck past McCollum’s glove from the doorstep.
The Wolves took a 4-3 lead into the second intermission at 17:13. After Chicago won the draw from the left faceoff dot, Jason Garrison received the puck near the right point and whistled a shot by McCollum’s mitt.
T.J. Tynan spread Chicago’s edge to two goals 1:39 into the final stanza. Seven seconds into a 4-on-3 power play, Tynan snapped a shot under the right shoulder of McCollum from the right-wing circle.
Grand Rapids halted the Wolves’ five-goal run with 7:36 remaining when Bertuzzi potted his second power play tally of the afternoon. In a similar setup to Bertuzzi’s first goal, Lorito from the right circle slid a pass through traffic to Bertuzzi waiting in the left circle. Lorito, who made his return to the lineup after missing four games due to injury, finished the contest with a pair of power play assists.
Despite Grand Rapids pulling McCollum for the extra skater with 1:27 to play, the Griffins could not find the equalizer.
McCollum finished with 22 saves, while Lagace countered with 30 stops.
The Griffins notched two power play goals on five attempts and the Wolves converted once on six opportunities.
Notes: Turgeon played in his 100th game as a Griffin…The Griffins had their three-game winning streak in matinee contests snapped…Grand Rapids outshot its seventh straight opponent…Matt Puempel, the team’s leading scorer with 21 points (9-12—21), missed his fifth straight game due to injury and Turner Elson (8-6—14) missed his seventh straight due to illness…The Griffins were without captain Matthew Ford, who was serving a one-game suspension due to a slew-footing incident against Milwaukee last Saturday.
Three Stars: 1. CHI Tynan (game-winning goal, assist); 2. GR Bertuzzi (two power play goals, assist); 3. CHI Garrison (goal, assist)