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CHICAGO BREAKS TREND, WINS AT HOME 3-1

ROSEMONT, Ill. – The Grand Rapids Griffins’ (18-10-1-1) offensive woes continued with a 3-1 loss to the Chicago Wolves (17-9-3-1) at Allstate Arena on Thursday night. Chicago winning at Allstate Arena marks the initial win for the home team in the season series. The visiting team had won the first six contests before tonight’s matchup. After winning its first seven road outings, Grand Rapids is 3-3-0-1.

The Griffins opened the game’s scoring when Eric Manlow tallied his team-leading 13th goal. Manlow walked down the slot, faked a shot, skated around a prone Kari Lehtonen and slid the puck into an open net at 9:56 of the first period. Nathan Robinson and Joey MacDonald assisted on the goal.

Chicago answered with a power play goal with 19 seconds remaining in the first period. Brad Larsen set Cory Larose up in the slot. Larose lifted the puck over MacDonald to knot the score at 1-1 at the first intermission.

The teams traded scoring chances during the second period, but neither was able to light the lamp during the middle frame.

The Wolves broke the tie when Larose recorded his second marker of the night. Greg Hawgood controlled the puck from his defensive zone the length of the ice behind the Griffins net. He slid the puck into the crease allowing Larose to pop the puck past MacDonald at 15:48 of the third period.

With the Griffins fighting off their seventh shorthanded situation, J.P. Vigier secured Chicago’s win with an empty net goal with 23 seconds remaining.

MacDonald made 36 saves while Lehtonen stopped 29 shots.

Grand Rapids returns to action on Sunday when the Cincinnati Mighty Ducks visit Van Andel Arena at 6 p.m.

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