Apr 14, 2024

HARTFORD, CT – The Hartford Wolf Pack hosted the Charlotte Checkers in their season series finale on Sunday afternoon at the XL Center. Jaroslav Chmelař's first AHL goal capped off a dominant second period against the Checkers, as the Pack secured a confidence-boosting 5-2 victory.

Adam Edström’s shorthanded heroics led to the eventual game-winner at the 16:28 mark of period two. Following a strong shift in the defensive zone, Edström poked the puck free and got a step on a Checker for a breakaway. Edström waited out goaltender Spencer Knight before elevating a backhander to make it 3-1 Wolf Pack at the time.

There was a playoff feel from the moment the puck dropped, with 14 shots and plenty of physicality to go around in the opening period.

The Wolf Pack had two chances on the powerplay, while the Checkers went to the advantage near the end of the frame.

Charlotte got an early jump on the Pack to open the middle stanza, as Casey Fitzgerald got a step on a Wolf Pack defender before cutting to the net and lifting a backhander above the glove of Louis Domingue to give Charlotte the 1-0 lead just 43 seconds in.

A penalty-ridden second period saw each side get their chances to find twine. On Hartford’s second powerplay of the period, Adam Sýkora collected a pass from Karl Henriksson at the top of the left-wing circle and fired a shot through a screen that beat Knight to tie the game at 9:06.

The Wolf Pack took their first lead of the afternoon on their next powerplay, a five-minute major for cross-checking to Patrick Khodorenko.

Brett Berard fired a laser that caught the back bar and rocketed out for his 25th goal of the season. Berard’s tally initially was called no goal, but a video review moments later showed a clear goal. The goal gave the Wolf Pack a lead they never lost.

Edström’s 3-1 tally was the Wolf Pack’s eighth shorthanded goal of the season and their second against the Checkers. It would prove to be the goal that snapped Charlotte’s ten-game point streak at the XL Center.

The Pack continued to keep their foot on the gas in the third period, ballooning the lead to 5-1. Chmelař forced a turnover and sprung himself in on a breakaway, beating Knight for his first career professional goal at 3:55.

Under three minutes later, a terrific effort from Berard gave Brennan Othmann a tap-in for his 19th goal of the season. Othmann fed Berard up top who fought off two defenders before giving it back to Othmann for the no-doubter at 6:36

The Checkers showed some fight at 13:13 as Rasmus Asplund made it 5-2 after firing a hard shot through traffic that beat Domingue. It would not, however, be enough on this day.

The Wolf Pack are back in action this Friday as they host another potential playoff opponent in the Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Penguins. The puck drop is slated for 7:00 p.m. on fan appreciation night.

Tickets are available at www.hartfordwolfpack.com.

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ABOUT THE HARTFORD WOLF PACK: The Hartford Wolf Pack has been a premier franchise in the American Hockey League since the team’s inception in 1997. The Wolf Pack are the top player-development affiliate of the NHL's New York Rangers and play at the XL Center. The Wolf Pack has been home to some of the Rangers newest faces including Igor Shesterkin, Filip Chytil, and Ryan Lindgren. Follow the Wolf Pack on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and TikTok.  

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