The Chicago Wolves proved a change really does do you good when they welcomed back two familiar faces and earned a 6-3 road victory over the San Antonio Rampage at AT&T Center Tuesday night.
It was the Wolves first win at San Antonio since January 5, 2010.
Making his first appearance with the Wolves (33-24-5-4) since the NHL lockout ended on Jan. 6, forward Zack Kassian scored a goal 13 seconds into the opening period against San Antonio netminder Dov Grumet-Morris.
His team already holding an early lead, Chicago left wing Ludwig Blomstrand doubled it at 2:53, knocking home his first professional hockey marker.
The Rampage (29-31-1-6) seemed to be losing control the game when a poor play by the Wolves in their own zone led to right wing Anthony Luciani putting San Antonio on the board at 3:25, rifling a score past Matt Climie.
Continuing on with the blistering early scoring pace, another familiar face returning to the Wolves, forward Andrew Gordon, tossed in a contribution of his own. He slid a goal in to stake Chicago to a 3-1 lead.
Defenseman Brad Hunt connected off a pass from Gordon and ripped a puck past Grumet-Morris to extend the team's lead to 4-1 at 13:30 in the first.
With Chicago giving Grumet-Morris trouble, Brian Foster stepped in to replace him between the pipes.
It wasn't long before Chicago scoring ace Brett Sterling joined in on the fun, rocketing a shot from the top of the circle past Foster at the 6:37 mark.
That 5-1 lead would prove insurmountable for the Rampage, although they did notch a pair of third period scores. Center Scott Timmins and defenseman Zach Miskovic, who was traded to the Rampage from the Wolves earlier this season, each pocketed markers in the final frame but an empty net score by Darren Haydar at 18:13 more than iced the win for Chicago.