In light of the NHL returning, I decided to skip the Chicago Wolves weekly update last week, but now that the NHL is getting back into the flow of things, we're back.
When we last left off on Jan. 13, the Wolves had won back-to-back games against the Abbotsford Heat, leading to a three-game winning streak, and were sitting in 12th place in the West.
During the following week, Chicago split a series against the Texas Stars, winning 4-1 and losing 6-4, and then defeated the Houston Aeros 3-1. Brett Sterling, who had a hat trick Jan. 11 against the Heat, posted two goals in the 4-1 win as he continues to skyrocket in the stats.
During the past week, the Wolves traveled to Peoria to face the Rivermen (St. Louis Blues farm team), and then stopped off in Rockford against the rival IceHogs (Chicago Blackhawks farm team).
Wednesday, Jan. 23: Chicago @ Peoria
Wednesday's game was fairly uneventful for the Wolves as Peoria goaltender Jake Allen stole the show. Allen stopped all 27 shots he faced, and Peoria won the game 2-0. Chicago goalie Joe Cannata, filling in for an injured Matt Climie (filling in for an injured Eddie Lack), was strong, stopping 30/32 Rivermen shots.
Friday, Jan. 25: Chicago @ Rockford
After having their win-streak snapped, the Wolves ventured into Rockford to start it up again. In the absence of Lack and Climie, Cannata got the nod to start his fifth game of the season.
Darren Haydar of the Wolves and Shawn Lalonde of the IceHogs swapped goals in the first before Haydar put the Wolves up 2-1 with his second of the game and ninth of the season. Both goalies stepped up after that, keeping the score idle until the final buzzer.
Cannata was strong again, posting a .970 save percentage in his third win of the season. The strong play of he and Climie (whose return is expected shortly) this season will need to continue, as it was announced that Lack will be sidelined for the next six months after hip surgery.
The Wolves finish off their road trip in Milwaukee (Nashville Predators farm team) on Feb. 1 before returning home for revenge against Peoria on Feb. 2.
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