Goalie Eddie Lack key in keeping Wolves’ comeback alive
BY SETH GRUEN For Sun-Times Media April 25, 2012 10:24PM
Wolves center Kevin Doell battles for the puck against the Rampage on Wednesday night. The teams will meet in a decisive Game 5 on Friday at Allstate Arena. | Dale Woltman~Wolves
Updated: May 28, 2012 9:01AM
After scoring two goals, center Steven Reinprecht will get the credit for carrying the Wolves to a 3-1 victory against the San Antonio Rampage in Game 4 of the Calder Cup playoffs at Allstate Arena on Wednesday night.
But Reinprecht knows he wouldn’t have gotten that opportunity if it weren’t for goalie Eddie Lack.
Lack was nearly impenetrable, stopping 30 of 31 shots. The victory evened the series at 2 and forced a decisive fifth game in the best-of-5 series that will be played at Allstate Arena on Friday.
“It’s either push back or go golfing — and we didn’t want to go golfing,” Reinprecht said. “They’re a great team and we knew we had to get skating and put pucks in the net.
“I can’t give enough credit to Eddie. He was unbelievable.”
After allowing Michael Caruso to open the scoring at 43 seconds of the first period, Lack was superb in helping to kill six short-handed minutes for the Wolves later in the period.
The Wolves failed to develop any semblance of offense until late in the second period. Reinprecht, who missed Game 3 with a broken nose, tied the game at 1 with a power-play goal at 17:53 in the period. His goal was only the ninth shot for the Wolves, who managed 15 total.
“You’ve got to rely on some pretty spectacular goaltending occasionally to win you a game that otherwise you wouldn’t have got — and [Lack] certainly did that,” coach Craig MacTavish said.
The Wolves were able to keep the puck in their zone for much of the third period, before Reinprecht scored the go-ahead goal at 12:00. Tim Miller added an empty-netter at 19:41 in the third.
For much of the night, the game looked ominous for the Wolves, who couldn’t even generate offense on the power play. The Wolves’ first shot on goal didn’t come until 12:37 in the first period.
“It’s a great experience and it’s great for development, too,” Lack said. “It’s going to be a fun night here Friday.”