Iowa Wild Beat Monsters In Overtime


In the first night of a two-game set against the Lake Eerie Monsters, affiliate of the Colorado Avalanche, who the Minnesota Wild also play on Saturday, the Iowa Wild battled hard and pulled out an overtime victory for their 19th win of the season, handing the Monsters their third straight loss.

A couple lineup changes came into play for Iowa. Steve McCarthy made his debut on the Iowa blue line after signing a PTO earlier in the week. Oddly, the team decided to dress seven defensemen for the game as well. They also put Tyler Graovac, Michael Keranen (just back from his fruitless time with the Minnesota Wild), and Kurtis Gabriel on a line together, which should have been quick and impactful, but just produced three shots between the trio.

After Johan Gustafsson allowed two goals on Tuesday’s first four shots against Grand Rapids, the Wild went with John Curry in net to start Friday’s game.

Throughout the game the Monsters and the Wild went almost shot for shot, with the Monsters taking a one shot advantage in the first, even up in the second, and the Wild having a one shot advantage in the third. Both Curry and Lake Eerie netminder Calvin Pickard — who has posted a .936 Sv% in 12 NHL starts this season — got their teams out of the first period unscathed.

But just 16 seconds into the second period Jonathon Blum gave the Wild a 1-0 lead on a goal with assists to Zack Mitchell and Brett Sutter.

The Wild lead wouldn’t last long though. Halfway through the second, Joey Hishon tied things up for the Monsters. Those two second period goals would stand as the only regulation goals in the game.

The game almost made it to a shootout, but not quite. They made it to the 6:39 mark of the extra frame, past the 4-on-4 stage and into the 3-on-3 stage of the overtime period, when newcomer Joel Chouinard would pot a game winner with assists going to both of the other Wild skaters on the ice — Sutter and Brady Brassart.

Chewy’s goal was a bomb. Just a good hard shot with no one between him and Pickard. Take a look at the highlight below with a nice call from Joe O’Donnell.

Iowa remains at the bottom of the AHL, but a few of the newcomers have provided a little hope that the team can make it through the long list of injuries the team is currently dealing with (and yet another healthy scratch for Zack Phillips) while still winning a few games. With the strong play from a couple of the newer guys, it wouldn’t be at all surprising to see a couple of them returning in some fashion next season.

The Wild play the Monsters again on Saturday night in Cleveland.

Closing it out with this: Happy birthday Gus.

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