Defenseman Jesper Sellgren produced his first two-goal game as a professional and added an assist to lead the Chicago Wolves to a 5-2 victory over the Milwaukee Admirals Wednesday night at Allstate Arena.
Sellgren posted the first two-goal night for a Wolves defenseman since Dylan Coghlan on Feb. 16, 2020. Veteran forward Josh Leivo added two goals and rookie forward Ivan Lodnia also scored for the Wolves (35-10-5-5), who increased their Central Division lead to 14 points over the Manitoba Moose.
Wolves captain Andrew Poturalski handed out two assists to boost his point total to 73 while rookie goaltender Pyotr Kochetkov (5-0-1) rejected 27 of 29 shots. Chicago has earned points in 11 consecutive games, which stands as the AHL’s longest active streak.
“We wanted to have a good start,” said Wolves head coach Ryan Warsofsky. “That was a big key for us tonight. I thought getting a goal on top of that was a bonus. That was a really good first period — one of our best of the year.”
The Wolves needed just 23 seconds to get on the board — their fastest opening goal of the season. Stefan Noesen rushed the puck into the offensive zone and dropped it for Andrew Poturalski along the left wing. Poturalski raced into the left circle, turned and teed it up for Sellgren above the circle and he blasted a one-timer through traffic.
Sellgren delivered again during the first period as forward David Gust battled his way down the right boards, turned along the back boards and spied Sellgren cruising alone in the left circle for a quick wrister at 12:45.
Shortly thereafter, the Wolves earned a power-play opportunity and Leivo cashed in with a remarkable tip of Joey Keane’s snapper from the point at 13:44.
Lodnia gave the Wolves a 4-0 advantage at 10:09 of the second when Sellgren and Stelio Mattheos worked the puck up the right wall to give Lodnia control of a 2-on-1 rush. He faked a pass to Kyle Marino coming down the left wing and ripped a bullet past goaltender Brandon Ingram’s blocker.
Former Wolves forward Cole Smith, who played for the team last year when the Wolves partnered with the Carolina Hurricanes and the Nashville Predators during the pandemic, broke up the shutout with a redirect at 19:21 of the second.
Leivo added his second of the night with 3:17 left in the game as Spencer Smallman’s long lead pass set up a 2-on-1 for Jamieson Rees and Leivo. Rees dished to Leivo open in the right circle and he whistled it home for a 5-1 lead.
Milwaukee’s Grant Mismash tipped home a rebound at 18:14 to close out the 5-2 verdict. Ingram (24-14-5) recorded 42 saves as Milwaukee’s six-game point streak came to a halt.
The Wolves travel to Toronto for 3 p.m. games Saturday and Sunday before returning to Allstate Arena to host the Texas Stars at 7 p.m. Tuesday and the Manitoba Moose at 7 p.m. Friday.
To join the Wolves for Craft Beer Night on Tuesday or $2 Beer Night on Friday, contact a team representative via email at [email protected].