The Rochester Americans had their five-game point streak snapped on Friday night in a 6-2 road loss to the Chicago Wolves at Allstate Arena. A four-goal second period helped lift Chicago to the win over the Amerks, who moved to 28-19-3-4 on the season. Rochester had gone 4-0-0-1 in its previous five games and had won 13 of 17 leading up to Friday’s tilt in Chicago.
CLICK HERE TO VIEW BOXSCORE
Luke Adam scored his team-leading 24th goal of the season for the Amerks, giving him a goal in three straight games, while Kevin Porter netted his 10th goal of the campaign. Phil Varone, Chad Ruhwedel, Johan Larsson and Mike Zigomanis each collected an assist in the game while goaltender Matt Hackett finished with 31 saves.
Shane Harper scored two goals to lead the way for Chicago while Christian Hanson added a goal and an assist. Mark Cundari, Alexandre Bolduc and Sebastian Wannstrom rounded out the scoring for the Wolves while netminder Jake Allen turned aside 22 of 24 shots.
A scoreless first period featured strong play from both goaltenders, with Hackett, making his first start since Feb. 15, standing tall during multiple power play opportunities for Chicago during the opening 20 minutes. The second period would prove to be a different story as the teams combined for six goals.
The Amerks got on the board first at 2:22 of the second period as Adam scored his 12th power play goal of the season. After Jamie Tardif won a puck battle behind the net, Varone controlled on the left half-wall and exchanged passes with Ruhwedel before Varone took a wrist shot from the left face-off circle. Allen kicked aside Varone’s shot, but the rebound bounced out to Adam, who quickly fired it into the Chicago net to give Rochester the lead. Both Varone and Ruhwedel were credited with assists on the goal.
Chicago responded by scoring two goals in a span of just 2:09, with the Wolves’ first goal coming off the stick of Harper. With Chicago applying pressure in the Rochester zone, the puck made its way back to the point, where Brent Regner took a slap-shot that went wide to the left of the Amerks net. The puck took a big bounce off the back boards to the opposite side of the net, where Harper was stationed for the tap-in to tie the game. Just over two minutes later, Chicago took its first lead of the game as Bolduc converted on a shorthanded breakaway attempt.
The Wolves then extended their lead to 3-1 when Hanson capitalized on a turnover. As the Amerks broke out of their own end, Hanson was able to intercept a pass and immediately take a shot on goal that got by Hackett to put Chicago up by a pair.
Rochester retaliated quickly, however, when Porter scored his 10th of the season. Larsson picked up a loose puck along the right wing boards and rolled a shot toward the Chicago net. Before it got there, it ricocheted off the stick of a Wolves defenseman, then was chipped into the air by Zigomanis. Porter then located the floating puck and batted it out of midair and into the net for the goal.
A series of penalties on one play to Rochester then gave the Wolves a lengthy 5-on-3 advantage, and Cundari scored off a nifty passing play to close out a wild second period with his team leading by a 4-2 margin.
Wannstrom opened the scoring in the third period when he converted on a partial breakaway to extend the Chicago lead to 5-2, and Harper closed out the scoring with his second of the game at the 17:20 mark of the final frame.
The Amerks play their third game in four nights on Sunday, Mar. 2 when Rochester visits the Milwaukee Admirals for a 4 p.m. EST face-off at the BMO Harris Bradley Center. The Sunday matinee will be the first of just two meetings between the two teams this season will be carried live on Sports 1280 WHTK. Sunday’s contest will also mark the first in over seven years for the clubs, who last met during the 2006-07 campaign.