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October 18, 2023

ROSEMONT, Ill.—The Chicago Wolves faced off against the Texas Stars in a matinee contest Wednesday at Allstate Arena.

Dominic Franco, Austin Strand and Cory Conacher each had goals for the Wolves but it wasn’t enough as the Stars skated to a 7-3 victory.

Six different Stars scored as they snapped a two-game losing skid while handing the Wolves their second consecutive defeat to start the 2023-24 season.

“We didn’t quit,” Wolves coach Bob Nardella said. “We played desperate in the third but the start of the game for them was a little too much to overcome.”

Texas raced to a three-goal lead in the opening period on scores by Cutis McKenzie, Matej Blumel and Riley Damiani before the Wolves answered.

With the Wolves killing a penalty late in the first, Franco raced into the Texas zone, skated around defenseman Christian Kyrou and buried a forehand shot past Stars goaltender Remi Poirier for the shorthanded goal. Matt Donovan earned an assist on Franco’s first of the season.

Early in the second, Strand pulled the Wolves to within 3-2 when the defenseman wired a shot from the high slot that beat Poirier to the stick side. Nathan Sucese and Hank Crone picked up helpers on the play.

The comeback stalled when Texas notched the next two goals with Kyle McDonald and Mavrik Bourque each finding the back of the net.

In the third, the Wolves cut the deficit to 5-3 on Conacher’s power-play goal. The veteran pounced on a rebound of a Rocco Grimaldi shot and fired it by Poirier from the slot. In addition to Grimaldi’s assist, Donovan added his second of the game.

Frederik Karlstrom and Bourque each had empty-netters to close the scoring for the Stars.

“We’re not where we want to be yet,” Nardella said. “We have to work through it. We have to work harder as a staff and figure some things out and go from there.”

Adam Scheel (26 saves) suffered the loss for the Wolves while Poirier (28 saves) earned the win for the Stars.

The Wolves stand at 0-1-1-0 on the season while Texas improved to 1-2-0-0.

“We know how we want to play, it’s just guys aren’t used to playing like that,” Nardella continued. “We’ll get there, but it’s just taking a little time.”

Next up: The Wolves travel to Rockford to face the IceHogs on Saturday night (7 p.m.).

For information on Wolves ticket plans for the 2023-24 season—everything from single-game tickets to Flex Packs to group outings—visit chicagowolves.com or call 1-800-THE-WOLVES.