WOLF PACK JUMP OUT TO EARLY LEAD, CRUISE TO 5-1 WIN OVER PENGUINSMar 26, 2023
WILKES-BARRE, PA – The Hartford Wolf Pack wrapped up their final three-in-three set of the season with a strong performance on Sunday afternoon, cruising to a 5-1 victory over the Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Penguins to earn four of a possible six points on the weekend.
Will Lockwood continued a career year on Sunday, potting his 14th goal of the season 6:25 into the contest. Entering the zone on a two-on-one with Ryan Carpenter, Lockwood took a pass and went to his backhand before lifting a shot over Dustin Tokarski to give the Wolf Pack a 2-0 lead. The goal was Lockwood’s second with the club and would stand as the game-winner.
For the second meeting in a row with the Penguins, the Wolf Pack would score in the opening minute of the game to take a lead they never lost. Zac Jones collected a puck in the neutral zone and danced his way into the Penguins’ end, weaving his way to the top of the left wing circle before snapping a shot toward the goal. The shot beat Tokarski by the glove, giving the Wolf Pack the lead just 16 seconds into the game.
Lockwood would then extend the Hartford lead to 2-0 at the 6:25 mark, scoring on the two-on-one rush with Carpenter. Hartford’s dominant period ended with a third goal at 13:33, this time on the powerplay. Tanner Fritz held the puck on the right wing wall, setting things up on Hartford’s third powerplay of the night. The veteran forward sent a perfect pass across the ice to Jonny Brodzinski, who fired a quick shot from the left wing circle that beat Tokarski for the captain’s 18th goal of the season.
Anton Blidh made it a 4-0 game 10:27 into the middle frame, taking a loose puck behind the Penguins goal, making his way to the front of the net and snapping a backhand shot over the shoulder of Tokarski. The shot rang the crossbar and landed in the back of the net for Blidh’s tenth goal of the season.
The Penguins did get a powerplay goal at 10:31 of the third period, as Jonathan Gruden beat Louis Domingue for his 15th goal of the season. It wouldn’t be enough in the end, as Turner Elson fired the dagger into an empty net at 19:24 for his 13th goal of the campaign.
Domingue made 27 saves for his second victory in as many outings in Wilkes-Barre/Scranton this season against his former club.
The Pack return to the XL Center on Wednesday, March 29th, hosting the Bridgeport Islanders in the penultimate installment of the ‘Battle of Connecticut’ this season. The puck drop is set for 7:00 p.m. To get tickets, visit www.hartfordwolfpack.com.
# # #
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.