ROSEMONT, Ill. – Goaltender Pheonix Copley stopped all 26 shots he faced to pace the Chicago Wolves to a 2-0 victory over the Manitoba Moose on Sunday afternoon at Allstate Arena.Centers Pat Cannone and Jeremy Welsh scored for the Wolves (5-1-0-1), who maintained their lead in the Central Division and equaled the second-best start in the franchise’s 22-year history.
Copley, who blanked Charlotte on Oct. 25 in his last appearance, became the first Wolves goaltender to produce shutouts in consecutive starts since Kari Lehtonen on Nov. 20 and 24, 2004. Pasi Nurminen and Wendell Young are the only other Wolves goaltenders to post back-to-back shutouts.
“Pheonix made some big saves for us,” said Wolves head coach John Anderson. “It’s hard when you have a shutout and don’t play the next game, but we’re playing so few games and he and Jordan Binnington have been playing so well.”
The Wolves opened the scoring at 4:20 of the second period with a gorgeous tic-tac-toe play that ended with Cannone’s goal from below the right circle. Chicago’s forecheck forced a turnover from behind the Manitoba net. Zach O’Brien’s pass from the right circle went into the slot for Ivan Barbashev, whose quick pass to Cannone led to a one-timer past Manitoba goaltender Eric Comrie.
Welsh gave the Wolves some breathing room at 10:31 of the third when he picked off a pass at center ice, raced into the slot and faked a forehand blast before flipping a backhand past Comrie’s glove.
Copley (2-1-0), a second-year pro from North Pole, Alaska, posted his fifth American Hockey League shutout. Manitoba (1-6-1-1) received 28 saves from goaltender Eric Comrie (0-2-1).
The Wolves return home on Saturday, Nov. 21, for Salute to Military Families Night, presented by Kia and Magellan, and then Star Wars Day on Sunday, Nov. 22. To learn how to be a part of the special Star Wars pregame event featuring “Star Wars Rebels” star Taylor Gray, visit ChicagoWolves.com or call 1-800-THE-WOLVES.
WOLVES 2, MOOSE 0
Manitoba 0 0 0 — 0
Chicago 0 1 1 — 2
First Period—None. Penalties—Paajarvi, Chicago (tripping), 1:27; Caron, Chicago (tripping), 4:41; Beach, Chicago (fighting), 7:31; Kramer, Manitoba (fighting), 7:31; Olsen, Manitoba (slashing), 10:54; Lindbohm, Chicago (roughing), 11:10, Welsh, Chicago (roughing), 11:10; Lipon, Manitoba (roughing double-minor), 11:10; MacWilliam, Manitoba (roughing), 11:10; Beach, Chicago (slashing), 15:49.
Second Period—1, Chicago, Cannone 5 (Barbashev, O’Brien), 4:20. Penalties—Abeltshauser, Chicago (cross-checking), 5:49; Olsen, Manitoba (roughing), 9:00.
Third Period—2, Chicago, Welsh 2 (unassisted), 10:31. Penalties—Melchiori, Manitoba (elbowing), 1:17; Lindbohm, Chicago (interference), 4:29; Kostalek, Manitoba (holding), 16:34; Albert, Manitoba (cross-checking), 19:43.
Shots on goal—Manitoba 10-4-12—26; Chicago 5-18-7—30. Power plays—Manitoba 0-5; Chicago 0-6. Goalies—Manitoba, Comrie (28-30); Chicago, Copley (26-26). Referee—Shaun Davis. Linesmen—Ryan Daisy and Brandon Gawryletz.