Brent Regner saved the Wolves from giving away a point Friday night. He wasn’t happy the game against the Hamilton Bulldogs came down to that.
After squandering a two-goal lead in the third period, the Wolves beat the visiting Bulldogs 3-2 in overtime on Regner’s goal with 42.6 seconds left. Shane Harper and Jake Chelios also scored, and Matt Climie made 33 saves, giving the Wolves at least a point for the fifth time in six games.
They led 2-0 entering the third before goals from T.J. Hensick and Davis Drewiske sent the game to overtime. But Regner’s winner helped the Wolves improve to 16-0-0-0 when leading after two periods.
“Winning teams don’t do that,” Regner said. “We’re really happy with the win. But we’ve also got to take a learning experience out of this. You just can’t do that if you want to be a winning team. You can’t give up a two-goal lead in the third period and expect to win games.”
For most of the night, it didn’t look as if the Wolves would need overtime.
Harper’s power-play goal 8:19 into the first gave the hosts a 1-0 lead. Ty Rattie’s shot was stopped by Hamilton goalie Mike Condon (35 saves), but Harper jammed in the rebound, scoring his 12th of the season.
Chelios then gave the Wolves a 2-0 lead at 3:13 of the second period. His shot from above the left circle snuck past Condon, giving Chris Chelios’ son his first AHL goal. Re-signed in June after finishing last season with the team, Jake has experienced ups and downs, but he has been a key part of a power play that entered Friday ranked fourth in the league at 20.4 percent.
But the Wolves couldn’t add on after Chelios scored. Hensick connected 37 seconds into the third period. Then Drewiske beat Climie with 4:22 left to send it to overtime.
NOTE: Defenseman Brent Sopel (finger) missed his eighth consecutive game. Sopel will be honored before the game Saturday night against the Rockford IceHogs for playing in 1,000 career regular-season games.