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Sunday, October 29, 2006

Final seconds, Iowa ties, then wins in OT

With just four seconds remaining in the third period, Iowa scored a tying goal, setting up a game-winning goal in overtime, to defeat the Chicago Wolves 5-4 Saturday. The goals were set-up by a penalty by defenseman Braydon Coburn who is on a conditioning assignment from the Atlanta Thrashers.

Sidelined earlier in the season by an injury, last night Coburn seemed too shy-away from physically challenging his man. In the first period Coburn took two penalties, a hooking and a tripping penalty, that may indicate he wasn’t physically up to the task of playing. However, with forty seconds remaining in the game, and the Iowa team already emptying their net to put another man in Michael Garnett’s face, Coburn was outmaneuvered and grappled his man, dragging him to the ice.

Coburn was given a two-minute penalty. With six men, Iowa seemed to buzz Garnett, finally shooting the puck in with just seconds left on a rebound bounce to Chris Conner. Sometimes one shot or check is enough to turn the game. With the oxygen disappearing fast in the Allstate Arena, Iowa scored the game-winning goal 1.06 into the overtime.

While credit wasn’t given to Michael Garnett, he stopped 26 shots and may have looked as good as at any point so far this season. Iowa broke a small losing streak, although the result does give one point to the Wolves.

The official attendance at the Wolves game was 6432. Blackhawks attendance, same night, 13580. Ex-Wolf, Karl Stewart played more than 15 minutes in a Blackhawk uniform against the Anaheim Ducks, earning a –1 for the night, but also a nice quote in the Chicago Sun-Times.

Atlanta had initially traded Stewart to the Anaheim organization, this summer. Seeing as how his most serious injury was at the hands of the AHL Cinncinnati Mighty Ducks during the lockout year, and included an uncalled strike by Duck goalie Ilya Gryzgalov on an unconscious Stewart, the chemistry was always suspect. Gryzgalov shutout the Hawks in one of the few televised homegames.

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