The Chicago Wolves rallied from two third-period deficits and forced extra time but fell, 4-3, to the Iowa Wild in overtime on Saturday night at Allstate Arena.
Forward Brandon Pirri’s two goals sparked the scoring for the Wolves (8-5-1-1) and snapped Iowa’s two-game shutout streak, but Iowa (11-4-1-0) capitalized on a miscue in overtime to take the first contest of the season between the teams. Chicago scored three power-play goals and Iowa notched two.
“It becomes a special teams war,” said Wolves head coach Rocky Thompson. “And it’s not something that we wanted to get involved with against a team that leads the league in power play and penalty kill.”
Iowa scored two power-play goals in the second period and added a third tally in the third frame, eventually taking the game with 2:16 left in overtime on a goal from forward Gerry Fitzgerald.
Pirri broke Iowa’s 145 minutes and 40 seconds of shutout hockey and put the Wolves up 1-0 with his fifth tally of the season, snagging the puck from Iowa’s Matt Read in the left circle and sniping the shot over goaltender Andrew Hammond’s glove 17:02 into the game.
Forward Reid Duke tied the game 2-2 with a power-play goal at the 16:09 mark of the third period. T.J. Tynan found him rushing down the right wing and Duke slid a shot between Hammond’s skates.
Pirri tabbed his second power-play goal of the evening at the 16:20 mark of the third period, sailing a shot in from the top of the circle between Hammond’s pads to help force the overtime period.
Hammond (7-3-1) earned the win with 29 saves while Max Lagace (3-2-1) ended the night with 23 saves.
The Wolves’ homestand continues at 3 p.m. Sunday against the Manitoba Moose. It’s a Family Sunday, which means the first 1,000 kids receive a free Legoland Discovery Center admission ticket.