The Chicago Wolves and Oklahoma City Barons battled for 65 minutes and into a six-round shootout — and the Wolves prevailed with a 3-2 win Wednesday night at the Allstate Arena.
Danny Groulx and Darren Haydar scored in regulation for the Wolves (31-23-5-4), who snapped a two-game losing skid and moved into a tie for seventh in the Western Conference playoff standings.
“It was a tough game tonight, both teams really battled,” said Wolves coach Scott Arniel. “At this time of year it is nice to get 1 point, but even better to grab that second point.”
After the Barons tied the game at 2-2 with 3:57 gone in the second period, neither team scored in regulation or overtime. The Wolves’ Michael Davies and Nicklas Jensen converted in the shootout, while goaltender Matt Climie stopped 5 of 6 tries by the Barons.
The Barons (30-23-2-8) opened scoring 4:46 into the first period when Toni Rajala found Anton Lander in the slot and he redirected the puck past Climie.
The Wolves needed just 23 seconds to knot the score. Groulx skated in from the near point to the top of the circle and his shot ricocheted off the stick of a Barons defenseman and through the legs of goaltender Yann Danis (17-14-5. 24 saves).
The Wolves took a 2-1 lead into the locker room after 20 minutes when Eric Kattelus and Haydar worked a 2-on-1, which Haydar finished off at 18:37.
The Barons grabbed the lone goal of the second period. Climie played the puck outside of the crease, but was he was stripped of the puck by Rajala. He sent a pass to the far point, which defenseman Alex Plante one-timed past Climie (18-19-3), who stopped 31 shots in regulation and overtime.
The Wolves continue their push to the Calder Cup playoffs when they host the Lake Erie Monsters at 7:30 p.m. Friday at the Allstate Arena.Copyright © 2013 Paddock Publications, Inc. All rights reserved.