E-Mail Subscriptions to the Blog

Enter your email address:

Delivered by FeedBurner

Thursday, May 03, 2007

Touchdown Wolves. 7-0 victory over Iowa

The game winning goal occurred with just 43 seconds on the clock. Twenty seconds later, the Wolves added insurance. A touchdown victory for the Wolves, 7-0 over the visiting Iowa Stars in the first round of the Western Division playoff finals at the Allstate Arena Wednesday.

It was the first shutout of the playoffs in the American Hockey League this season, a win by Michael Garnett. Garnett stopped 28 shots on goal. It was also a well-rounded offense, as the top line only scored one goal Wednesday, an empty net, short handed goal, late in the third period.

Colin Stuart, the Oak Park native, scored three points, including the insurance goal. Jordan LaVallee scored two goals.

The smoke from the pre-game fireworks still hung thick in the air as the Wolves put their second goal in the net. Wait, rewind twenty seconds. After losing the face-off, the Stars gained control of the puck along the near boards. Marius Holtet took the puck across the Wolves blue line, but was checked by Mark Popovic. The puck spun loose to Trevor Byrne and then to Colin Stuart, who crossed into the Stars zone near the Stars bench. He fed it across to Niko Dimitrakos who feathered it back to Stuart. Stuart quickly returned it to Dimitrakos, who was now flying between the hash marks and put the first puck under Dan Ellis. The second goal occurred after Chicago won the resulting face-off. The puck was dumped in. Then Stuart and Doell began battling for the puck along the far boards. At one point the puck popped lose to Andre Deveaux, who sent it back into the scrum. Stuart came up with the puck against Marty Wilford, and fired it past Ellis just as the first goal was being announced.

A third goal in the first frame was scored by LaVallee at the hash marks on a feed from Cory Larose, making the first period score 3-0.

In the second period, Ellis was caught trying to play the puck behind his goal with a quick centering pass by Stuart to Doell. At this point Iowa coach Dave Allison withdrew Ellis from the pipes and substituted Tobias Stephan. The Wolves had shelled Ellis earlier in the regular season too, on December 12th, and the result was much the same: Wolves 7-3. Later in the period, a centering pass by Iowa center Shane Endicott went wildly wrong, ending on the stick of LaVallee, who was crossing the blue line near center ice. He quickly wristed it past Stephan.

In the final period with the score 5-0 Yared Hagos and Deveaux were given two minutes for fighting at the 14.44 mark. Forty-two seconds later Trevor Byrne was penalized for holding the stick. Allison decided to pull Stephan to create a five on three. Matt Niskanen lost the puck near blue line to Jason Krog who back-handed the puck through an Iowa player straight down center ice and into the empty goal.

The final goal of the night was tallied with just eight seconds remaining. Stuart fought for the puck along the far boards, feeding it to Deveaux at the hash marks, who one-timed it in.

Ellis received the loss, stopping 13 pucks, but letting four in. Stephan stopped five, but allowed two in. There were only seven power plays, two for Chicago and five for the Stars. None converted. Chicago has shutout opponents seven times in the playoffs in franchise history. The seven points comes on top of a 48 to 29 goal advantage for the Wolves in the regular season, including the April 14 shutout of Iowa.

The last Iowa goal scored on Chicago was March 23rd in an Iowa victory at the Wells Fargo Arena. The last goal scored in Chicago by Iowa was December 5th when the Wolves won 5-2.

John Pettit, the President of the Iowa Stars lost his job, a local sports radio program in DesMoines announced on Thursday. Pettit was let go due to poor attendance, according to fans on the Iowa Stars discussion board. According to the Iowa Stars website, Pettit has more than 20 years experience in sports and facility management, including with Madison Square Garden, the Detroit Tigers, and the Joe Louis Arena. Iowa ranked 15th of 27 for AHL attendance in the regular season, drawing an average of 4,818 per game.

No comments: