CHARLOTTE, N.C. – Center Wade Megan scored 2 goals, including the game-winning power-play tally midway through the third period, as the Chicago Wolves claimed a 4-2 victory over the Charlotte Checkers on Wednesday night at Bojangles’ Coliseum.
Forward Landon Ferraro scored in the first period and Kenny Agostino added a late empty-netter for the Wolves (7-8-1-1), who played on the road for the eighth time in their last nine games.
Goaltender Jordan Binnington (4-4-1), debuting his new mask with Michael Jordan’s image painted on the side, posted a season-high 38 saves to earn the win.
The Wolves opened the scoring 10:53 into the first on Ferraro’s blast from the high slot. Chicago took advantage of a turnover at Charlotte’s blue line and a Checkers defender poked the puck loose, but Ferraro stepped up and lasered the puck into the top right corner for a 1-0 lead.
Charlotte (8-7-1-0) answered at 13:39 as a Wolves turnover in the neutral zone gave the Checkers a 2-on-1 advantage. Connor Brickley centered the puck to an uncovered Sergei Tolchinsky racing down the slot and he flipped a shot top-shelf past Binnington.
The Wolves needed just 27 seconds to respond as Reid McNeill’s shot from the left point bounced off Megan — who was skating away from the puck outside the crease — into the net for a 2-1 lead at the 14:06 mark.
The Checkers pulled even 44 seconds into the third period when defenseman Roland McKeown steered a wrist shot from the right half-boards and forward Andrew Miller re-directed it into the net while skating through the slot.
The Wolves, who couldn’t convert on their first six power plays, finally took advantage of one to gain a 3-2 lead 8:31 into the third as Megan buried a one-timer from the right circle. Charlotte thought it had numbers on a short-handed rush, but the Wolves poked away the puck to set up a 2-on-1. Ivan Barbashev slid a pass across the slot to Megan for his team-leading seventh goal of the season.
Agostino added insurance with 13 seconds left as Barbashev shunned his own chance for an empty-net tally and passed ahead to Agostino for the clincher.
Charlotte goaltender Alex Nedeljkovic (2-5-0) stopped 37 shots in the loss.
The Wolves return home at 7 p.m. Saturday to face the Rockford IceHogs in an Illinois Lottery Cup clash before hosting the Manitoba Moose at 4 p.m. Sunday. To pick up a Howliday Pack, which includes 10 ticket vouchers and special Wolves merchandise, visit ChicagoWolves.com or call 1-800-THE-WOLVES.