Wolves Cool Off Heat, 3-2
ABBOTSFORD, B.C.---Chicago Wolves center Matt Anderson cracked a 2-2 tie with 1:38 remaining to play to take the first of two back-to-back games, 3-2, against the Abbotsford Heat at the Abbotsford Entertainment and Sports Centre Thursday night.
Right wing Tim Stapleton (G, A) and defenseman Nathan Oystrick (2A) led the way for Chicago (29-17-0-3) with two points apiece. Left wing Brett Sterling also tallied for the Wolves, who sit in fourth place in the West Division, just two points out of first place.
The Wolves opened up the scoring with a power-play tally at 5:12 of the first period. Oystrick ripped a slap shot from the point that rebounded off of Heat netminder David Shantz and out to Sterling. Sterling hacked at the puck three times before slipping it past Shantz for the early 1-0 lead.
Abbotsford (21-23-4-3) evened the score with a power-play goal of their own to begin the second period. Right wing Evan Barlow passed the puck to defenseman Staffan Kronwall on the point, who wristed a shot that flew past the screened Wolves goaltender, Peter Mannino, at 3:39.
Chicago retaliated just 23 seconds later when Anderson came around from behind the net and dished the puck to Stapleton, who slid down to his knees before sneaking the puck past Shantz, glove-side.
Shantz (2-5-0) posted 33 saves in the losing effort.
The Heat evened the score once again with their second power-play marker of the night. Kronwall backhanded a pass over to defenseman Josh Meyers on the wing, who then one-timed a shot that lifted up and over Mannino's blockers, near-post at 13:15 of the second period.
Mannino (14-3-0) turned aside 22 of the 24 shots he faced to pick up his career-high sixth win in a row.
With 1:38 left in regulation, Anderson gave the Wolves a 3-2 lead. Right wing Joey Crabb passed the puck off to Anderson, who was posted on top of the crease, and Anderson chopped away at the puck before sending it over Shantz's glove, top-shelf.
The Wolves and Heat meet again tomorrow at 9:30 p.m. at the Abbotsford Entertainment and Sports Centre in Abbotsford, British Columbia.
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