The Chicago Wolves pulled within one goal late in the third period but couldn’t find the equalizer as the Rockford IceHogs earned the 3-2 win before 11,255 fans at the Allstate Arena Sunday night.
Trailing, 3-1, in the third period, Chicago (37-28-3-6) pulled to 3-2, with 6:22 to play. Center Jason Krog chipped the puck up the ice to left wing Carl Klingberg from the blueline and the forward took it, moved to his backhand and flipped a shot past Rockford netminder Alec Richards to earn his first American Hockey League goal.
“It’s very disappointing,” said Wolves Head Coach Don Lever. “We just couldn’t get on track. Eddie was fabulous in goal, but we just didn’t play with any desperation until the last five minutes.”
Rockford (32-32-4-5) took a 1-0 lead, 4:53 into the first period with a power-play marker from Mathis Olimb. Center Peter LeBlanc carried the puck into the zone and flicked a shot from the right circle, which Pasquale kicked out, but the rebound squirted out to Olimb, who fired it back past Wolves goaltender Edward Pasquale.
Pettersson evened it up for the Wolves, 1-1, at 11:21 of the first frame. Krog sent a pass across the zone to Pettersson low in the left circle and he wound up and ripped a shot past Richards and into the corner of the net.
Richards (15-21-1) turned aside 21 shots in the win for the IceHogs.
Rockford regained the lead, 2-1, at 10:18 of the second period when LeBlanc held the puck behind the Wolves net and slipped a pass to right wing Ben Smith who was standing in front of the crease and snapped a shot through Pasquale’s legs.
The IceHogs jumped ahead, 3-1, when left wing Rob Klinkhammer and center Jeff Taffe came down the ice on a two-on-one rush and Klinkhammer one-timed a shot from the near circle that Pasquale got a piece of, but the puck trickled over the goal line at 17:08 of the middle frame.
Pasquale (10-9-1) posted 37 saves for the Wolves.
The Wolves hit the road for a pair of games in Texas next week, beginning when they visit the Houston Aeros at the Toyota Center on Thursday at 7 p.m.