Mark Mancari, Darren Haydar lead Wolves to victory
BY SETH GRUEN For Sun-Times Media March 5, 2012 12:07AM
Bill Sweatt eyes the puck against the Oklahoma City Barons on Sunday at Allstate Arena. | Chicago Wolves
Updated: March 5, 2012 12:08AM
The Wolves rely heavily on wingers Mark Mancari and Darren Haydar.
A scoring drought from the two veterans was crippling the team the last two weeks. So it was no surprise that the duo’s resurgence coincided with the Wolves’ 4-1 victory over the Western Conference-leading Oklahoma City Barons on Sunday at Allstate Arena.
Mancari had a hat trick, and Haydar had a goal and an assist in the win, which broke a five-game losing streak. Neither scored during the skid.
“We rely on a few guys for an abundance of our offense, and if it dries up, it’s sorely missed, and both Mark and Haydes are guys that we count on to score goals,” coach Craig MacTavish said. “Our success is based, in large part, on them contributing offensively. And when they do that to the extent they did tonight, we’re going to win because we don’t score a lot of goals.”
The Wolves, who have won the last eight games in which Mancari has scored, fed off his confidence.
The Wolves had scored once on 44 power plays before Mancari scored on a power play at 10:15 in the first period. The celebration on the bench spoke to how desperate the Wolves were to score with the man advantage.
“You watch the power play the rest of the game, a lot of guys were playing with confidence, and it made a difference because when you’re not scoring in as many games as we did, you lose confidence,” Mancari said. “You lose faith in yourself, and you screw up a little more.”
Haydar had gone 17 games without a goal. His goal Sunday not only ended the streak but was his 100th with the Wolves.
“I’d be lying if I said I wasn’t frustrated,” Haydar said. “I’m here to help the team on the scoreboard, and if I’m not doing that, I have to do something else to make myself valuable to the team.”