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Thursday, May 29, 2008

Wolves win 1st game of finals 5-4

Chicago’s power play again dominated a game to allow the Chicago Wolves a 5-4 win against the Wilkes-Barre/ Scranton Penguins at the Allstate Arena Thursday night. Three unanswered first period goals by the Wolves and a penalty kill of a 5:3 power play led to the team being wildly applauded as they exited the ice at the end of the first frame. However, the baby Pens came back in the second period, scoring early in the period, with just a minute, 15 seconds between the first and second goals.

The second and third goals of the Pens effort seemed to be set plays, almost identical, even to the lines, although the credits for the goals were awarded to different players. Off the face-off, the Pens brought the puck back to the right side blue line, then passed cross ice where the puck was teed up and fired through traffic for the goal.

After being taken advantage of twice by the play, the Wolves didn’t allow it to happen again. Goals by Joel Kwiatkowski and Bryan Little kept the Pens at a distance. But a third period goal by the Pens brought them within one of the Wolves. Then a sloppy penalty by Kwiatkowski with less than two minutes to go, gave the Pens a final chance at the power play.

The WBS goalie, John Curry was pulled, allowing the Pens to put a 6:4 advantage against the Wolves. Still, it was a near thing, as the Wolves almost put a loose puck into the empty Pens’ net.

Once again, the heart of the team was team vet Steve Martins. Martins was awarded a penalty shot during the closing seconds of the first period when a turnover during the power play had to be stopped by Wilkes-Barre. Ondrej Pavelec had 30 saves for the win. Penguins rookie Alex Goligoski, who has had an outstanding post-season, had a goal and three assists in the game.

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