The Chicago Wolves came back to the Allstate Arena with the series tied at one. After dropping game 1 5-0, the Wolves rebounded and stole game 2, 3-2. Wolves rookie Adam Muslin netted the game winner in the third period.
With the Wolves being the higher seed, they were able to choose if they started on the road or at home. The Wolves chose the first two games to be in Charlotte, preceding the Wolves will have the remaining three homes games in the best-of-five series.
The Checkers came out ready to go in the opening frame, generating three great chances in the first fifty seconds of the period. Charlotte is a quick team and jumped on the Wolves early.
Later in the period, the Checkers went up 1-0 with a slap-shot from the point by Philip Samuelsson, beating Wolves goalie Ville Husso stick side. The Wolves would follow wil plenty of chances, one being from LW Samuel Blais with a slap-shot between the circle. But nothing went in for the Wolves in the opening frame.
The Checkers would go up 2-0 in the last minute of the period with a wrister beating Husso stick side from Andrew Miller, his third goal of the series.
The Wolves came out fast in the second period as Kenny Agostino scoring twenty-four seconds into the frame. Then Musil picked up Jordan Schmaltz rebound that tied the game at 2 at 2:14. Then things got physical.
First, it was Wolves RW Bryce Gervias dropping the gloves against Checkers Andrew Poturalski. Next, Musil dropped the gloves and got sent to the box, joining Vince Dunn, serving his 10 min misconduct for abuse of officials, Gervais, and Agostino who was also in for dropping his gloves. Not what Wolves coach Craig Berube drew up, but the Wolves were able fight it off. At the end of two, both teams would go into the locker room tied at two.
The Checkers would re-gain the lead two minutes into the period. Patrick Brown picked up a rebounded off Husso’s pad, giving the Checkers the 3-2 lead. But if it’s one thing we know for sure, the Wolves can complete a comeback.
Ty Loney scored his first playoff goal at 3:35 into period, tying the game once again. Loney received a pass from Agostino and carried it closer to the net, ultimately beating Checkers goalie Tom McCollum glove-side.
The Checkers failed to get a shot on goal for quite some time in the third period, about 10 minutes. The Wolves were in control of the neutral zone and many turnovers from the Checkers kept this game tied for a majority of the period.
The Checkers would have a chance to go ahead in the final minute-thirty of the period as they headed to the powerplay. Ty Loney was sent off for a controversial goalie interference call. But the Wolves penalty killers kept the score at 3. Next up, overtime.
In the overtime period, both teams were generating plenty of chances. About nine minutes into the overtime period, Andrew Agozzino had a breakway but could not put it home on McCollum. But it was Checkers Connor Brickley who scored, giving his team the win and the 2-1 series lead.
Game 4 between the Checkers and Wolves will be Tuesday at the Allstate Arena.