ROSEMONT, Ill. – Center Wade Megan netted his fifth goal in as many games and wing Andrew Agozzino registered his 200th career AHL point as the Chicago Wolves edged their in-state rival, the Rockford IceHogs, 3-2 Saturday night at Allstate Arena in the teams’ third Illinois Lottery Cup tilt of the season.
“We had good jump right from the get-go,” said Wolves head coach Craig Berube. “I liked a lot of guys’ play. Gervais and Megan were solid and had good energy and were noticeable. All the lines really had opportunities offensively and did a good job defensively too.”
Following a relatively quiet first period, the Wolves opened scoring in the second session when Ivan Barbashev’s point shot was redirected to Agozzino near the bottom of the right circle. He corralled the puck for an easy open-net goal at 7:35.
Things began to heat up in a middle frame that included a tussle between Chicago newcomer Reid McNeill and Rockford’s Brandon Mashinter. With just 32 seconds to play in the period, Jake Dowell received a check-to-head match penalty for cross-checking Megan in the back of the helmet into the boards.
At 9:15 of the third period, Megan whipped the puck across the offensive zone from the right boards near the blue line to Gervais alone in front of the Rockford (7-10-1-1) net. Gervais gathered the rolling puck and chipped a shot up over Lars Johansson’s blocker-side shoulder for the 2-0 lead.
Off a draw won by Rockford’s Jeremy Langlois in the Wolves zone, defenseman Viktor Svedberg took a shot from the right point that Tyler Barnes tipped past Binnington to cut Chicago’s lead to 2-1 at 15:12.
The Wolves answered just over two minutes later when Megan netted his eighth goal of the season to extend the Wolves lead to 3-1. Defenseman Brad Hunt picked up his team-leading 20th point with the lone assist on the play.
With less than a second on the clock, Spencer Abbott tapped the puck past Binnington for the 3-2 final score.
Rockford netminder Johansson (6-7-1) made 34 saves in the loss.
Chicago returns to action Sunday (Nov. 27) against the Manitoba Moose in second of three straight home games at Allstate Arena. Puck drop is slated for 4 p.m. For a complete 2016-17 game schedule or ticket information, visit ChicagoWolves.com.