CLEVELAND – Magnus Paajarvi netted his fourth goal of the season midway through the third period, but the Cleveland Monsters scored twice in the final five minutes to earn a 2-1 victory over the Chicago Wolves on Friday night at Quicken Loans Arena.
The first two frames of play featured end-to-end action – the clubs trading chances and very few whistles – but neither team could break through.
Things began to heat up during the opening five minutes of the third period when the Wolves (5-5-1-1) were on the offensive attack. Ryan Craig took exception to center Wade Megan in front of the Cleveland (4-7-0-1) net after the whistle and the pair squared off. Wolves defenseman Kevin Tansey and Cleveland’s Brett Gallant each earned five minutes for fighting, as well as secondary altercation game misconduct penalties.
At 10:49 of the third, Kenny Agostino stripped Alex Broadhurst of the puck near the Cleveland blue line. Agostino caught Landon Ferraro flying up the left wing, and Ferraro dished a pass to Paajarvi skating down the slot with a defender on his back. He picked up the pass and chipped a backhand shot past Anton Forsberg (4-3-1) for the game’s opening goal.
Following a faceoff to the right of Pheonix Copley (1-2-1), Broadhurst threw a shot at the net that deflected off a Wolves player and past Copley to knot the game 1-1 with 4:06 to play.
With just 45 seconds on the clock, former Wolves defenseman Jaime Sifers nabbed the game-winning goal for the 2-1 final.
Copley turned aside 31 shots in the loss and earned the game’s third-star honor. Forsberg stopped 23 of 24 shots and was named the game’s second star.
The Wolves and Monsters square off Saturday (Nov. 12) night in the second of back-to-back games at Quicken Loans Arena. Puck drop is slated 6 p.m. and will air live on CW50 throughout the Chicago area. For complete 2016-17 game and broadcast schedules, visit ChicagoWolves.com.