The Chicago Wolves claimed a brief second-period lead but couldn't stand prosperity, falling 3-2 to the Grand Rapids Griffins on Saturday night at Allstate Arena in Rosemont.
Center Corey Locke notched a goal and an assist for the Wolves (3-4-0-1). Defenseman Brent Regner delivered a power-play goal at 12:40 of the second period that gave the Wolves their temporary lead.
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"We played well enough to win," said Wolves coach John Anderson. "Their goalie stopped a couple breakaways in the third and the only mistake we made ended up in the back of our net."
The reigning Calder Cup champion Griffins (3-2-1-1) opened the scoring at 8:59 of the first period when right wing Teemu Pulkkinen took a pass from Cory Emmerton in the slot and roofed a shot off the crossbar that trickled across the goal line.
The Wolves pulled even at 17:53 when Shane Harper's pass sent Locke on a breakaway. Locke skated to goaltender Tom McCollum's left and lifted a backhander over his glove for his third goal of the season. David Shields also earned an assist.
With the man advantage, the Wolves took a 2-1 lead when Regner drilled a slap shot from the right point through traffic and past McCollum at 12:40 of the second period. Locke and Michael Davies picked up assists.
The Griffins needed just 10 seconds to erase the deficit. Center Calle Jarnkrok claimed a bouncing puck in the left circle and lifted a shot over goaltender Matt Climie's left shoulder.
Grand Rapids made the Wolves pay for a too-many-men penalty to seize a 3-2 lead with 40 seconds left in the second period. Tomas Jurco scored the power-play goal when he stood in front of the crease and tapped in a rebound of Gustav Nyquist's wrist shot from the right circle.
McCollum (2-0-0) posted 32 saves, and Climie (0-3-0) stopped 23 shots.