ROSEMONT, Ill.–-The Chicago Wolves rallied to tie the score with 1:08 remaining in the third period, but the San Antonio Rampage posted the series-winning goal in double overtime in Game 5 of the Western Conference Quarterfinals Friday night at the Allstate Arena.
San Antonio (3-2) grabbed the game-winner at 5:28 of double overtime.
The Rampage won a board battle and the puck squirted to center Jon Matsumoto, who walked in on Wolves goaltender Eddie Lack and fed defenseman Roman Derlyuk back door. Derlyuk snapped home the game-winner into an empty net to lift San Antonio to a 3-games-to-2 series win.
“We dug ourselves into a pretty big hole, tonight and earlier in the series,” said Wolves head coach Craig MacTavish. “We fought back hard to get to overtime. But in overtime, it is usually someone making a play to get a goal and they were able to convert on one of theirs.”
Trailing 2-0 midway through the third period, third-seeded Chicago (2-3) cut its deficit to 2-1 at 10:34. Defenseman Brad Hunt controlled the puck behind the net, walked to the bottom of the far circle and snapped a shot on net that crept through the post and Rampage netminder Jacob Markstrom’s pads and dropped over the goal line.
The Wolves tied the score at 2-2 with 1:08 remaining in regulation. With Lack on the bench for the extra attacker, right wing Darren Haydar’s shot from the near circle went off the leg of a Rampage defender and up over Markstrom’s shoulder. Markstrom (3-0) posted 37 saves in regulation and overtime.
After a scoreless opening 20 minutes, San Antonio opened scoring on the power play 7:23 into the second period. Defenseman Colby Robak’s shot from the top of the far circle was tipped in front by left wing Evan Barlow and through Lack’s legs.
The Rampage doubled their lead when center James Wright walked the puck through the far circle and slipped a pass across the crease to Mark Cullen, who fired a shot over Lack’s outstretched glove at 8:00 of the third. Lack (2-2) thwarted 34 of 37 shots in regulation and overtime.
–The Chicago Wolves