Rosemont, IL – The Omaha Ak-Sar-Ben Knights locked up the top spot in the Western Conference with a stirring 4-2 win over the Chicago Wolves in the last game of the regular season. The Knights will begin the Calder Cup Playoffs in a best-of-seven game series against the Iowa Stars beginning on Friday.
The Knights used the powerplay to take a 2-0 lead in the game. First, Carsen Germyn fed Chris Lee with a pass at the blue line. He walked down the slot and fired a shot off the goalpost past goalie Michael Garnett. The five-on-three powerplay goal was the fourth goal of the season for Lee.
The lead doubled on a later powerplay when Warren Peters snapped in a wrist shot off the crossbar for his career-high 16th goal of the year.
The Wolves closed the gap just 50 seconds later with the two teams skating four-on-four. Corey Larose got loose in the slot and lifted a backhand shot over Curtis McElhinney to make it 2-1 after one period.
The teams traded goals in the second period. Larose would tip home a shot by Andy Delmore to make it 2-2. Just 1:03 later, the Knights retook the lead when a centering pass from Adam Pardy was deflected in by Brandon Prust to put the Knights up 3-2 after two.
Peters scored an empty net goal of a face-off from his own zone in the third period as the Knights limited the Wolves to just six shots on goal.
The Knights finish the season with a record of 49-25-5-1 and 104 points. The win, their 27th on the road this year ties an AHL record for road wins in a single season.
Three Stars: 1. Corey Larose (CHI) – 2 goals; 2. Curtis McElhinney (OMA) – 24 saves; 3. Brandon Prust (OMA) – Game-winning goal.
Click here for game sheet.
The Knights will now prepare for their first round playoff series with the Stars. It begins on Friday, April 20th at 7:00 p.m. at the Civic Auditorium. Game two of the best-of-seven series will be on Saturday, April 21st at 7:00 p.m., also at the Civic.