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March 9, 2024

ROSEMONT, Ill.—The Wolves opened a five-game homestand by falling to the Rockford IceHogs 4-1 on Saturday night at Allstate Arena.

Josh Melnick scored for the Wolves but it wasn’t enough as the IceHogs raced to a big first-period lead behind two goals and an assist from Jackson Cates and went on to post their season-high sixth win in a row.

“They jumped on us early,” Melnick said. “We needed a good start and we didn’t have it. I thought we played pretty well late in the first and onward but the start killed us.”

It was all Rockford in the opening period as the IceHogs got Cates’ pair of goals and scores from Brett Seney and Cole Guttman to hold a 4-0 advantage heading into the first intermission.

In the second, the Wolves got on the board while on the power play. Melnick jumped on a loose puck and skated in on IceHogs goaltender Drew Commesso and chipped the puck into the net from in close. Matt Donovan and Julian Junca earned assists on Melnick’s fourth goal of the season.

“I came off the bench and got a good pass from Donovan and the goalie tried to poke check the puck so I just tried to flip it over him,” Melnick said. “It felt good.”


Neither team scored in the third as Commesso and Junca each stood tall in goal.

Adam Scheel started in goal for the Wolves and made eight saves before being replaced by Junca (19 saves) in the opening period. Commesso (23 saves) earned the win for the IceHogs.

Chicago fell to 20-28-3-2 on the season while Rockford moved to 25-21-5-2.

The Wolves will look to regroup for a showdown against the Milwaukee Admirals on Sunday at Allstate Arena, Chicago’s third game in three days.

“Three-in-threes are tough but we’ll grind it out and luckily we have another game (Sunday) to try and fix our mistakes,” Melnick said.

Next up: The Wolves host the Milwaukee Admirals on Sunday afternoon at Allstate Arena (3 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.