This game had everything. From goals to fights, the hard fought contest even had a few injury scares. But when the game came to its conclusion, the Wolves were backed into a must win situation. With todays 4-3 loss the Checkers now have a commanding 2-1 series lead. The added pressure of playing a best of five series instead of seven has just been knocked up a few notches.
Let’s start off with the positives from today as league MVP Kenny Agostino had himself a two point game. Along with the goal and assist the 24 year old had five shots to his name. Today was easily Agostino’s strongest game after looking off earlier in the series. Whether an injury has been hampering him or just plain tired, the AHL sniper had himself a great game.
Elsewhere on the ice, rookie Adam Musil once again made his presence known. Musil now has goals in back to back games, three points in total. The kid is built for the playoffs, at 6’3” and just over 200 pounds he plays a physical game but seems to control himself very well. Musil did have 51 penalty minutes in the WHL this season but he’s yet to put the Wolves down a man. It’s also worth noting that Mackenzie MacEachern continues to elevate his play as the post season rolls along. He only had 11 points in the regular season and hasn't got one in the playoffs but MacEachern continues to create chances and push the play. The former Michigan State forward lead the Wolves in shots with six.
For the negatives there weren't any glaring problems in the game. Well with the exception of one thing, Vince Dunn couldn't stay out of the box. After two periods Dunn had spent 14 minutes in the box. Sure the game misconduct didn't help but the minor penalties just aren't needed. Not when you’re relied on so heavily. Head coach Craig Berube clearly thinks highly of Dunn. He’s used in every situation, both in five on five and special teams. The 2015 secound round pick had 45 points in 72 games this season, that’s incredibly productive. For the Wolves to dig themselves out of this hole and survive to the next round players like Dunn need to keep their composure the entire game.
News and Notes:
Lineup wise the Wolves didn't change anything from game three. Meaning the likes of Jordan Kyrou, Brad Malone, Jake Walman, and Conner Bleackley all were healthy scratches today. Both Wade Megan and Jordan Schmaltz missed the entire third period due to mystery injuries. Megan did return for the overtime but wasn't used often, Schmaltz did not return to the game. The potential next opponent for the Wolves is the winner of the Grand Rapids Griffins(Redwings) vs Milwaukee Admirals(Predators) series. Currently the Griffins hold a 2-0 series lead. The Wolves and Checkers play game four this Tuesday at 7:00 pm.