The cuts have begun at training camp, with eleven players being released yesterday–a couple of days into camp/preseason. Forwards Riley Emerson and Trevor Kell have been assigned to the Missouri Mavericks of the CHL, where other players may follow as camp goes on. Nine other players were released as well: forwards John Armstrong, Brian Bicek, Cody Crichton, Matthew Gingera, Keaton Turkiewicz, and Podge Turnbull; and defensemen Vince LoVerde, Dan Maggio, and Matt McCready.
Training camp officially began last Friday, with practices taking place at the Triphahn Community Center and Ice Arena in Hoffman Estates. Sessions have been taking place this week 9:00AM-11:15AM according to the Wolves’ media relations department, and they are all open to the public–so anyone in the Chicagoland area with some time on their hands should definitely go catch a practice (and send me some tidbits!). Training camp also means preseason games, and the Wolves have already played two of their four…
The Wolves’ first preseason opponent were the Peoria Rivermen, one of the hated division rivals. Both teams saw defensemen lit the lamp in the first period, setting an expectation for a close game–but no one was expecting the match to be as low-scoring as it was close. After Matt McCready scored the opening goal for the Wolves and Mark Cundari followed suit for the Rivermen, the net remained untouched until the game finally went to a shootout. In the shootout, the Wolves’ Corbeil stopped four out of six shots, but the Rivermen’s Jake Allen stopped five out of six, giving the victory to the Rivermen 2-1. Joe Cannata was the Wolves’ starting goaltender, giving way to Mathieu Corbeil after 30:32 minutes of play.
The second preseason opponent were the Rockford IceHogs, whom I have a soft spot for as the mini Blackhawks. The truth of the matter is that the Wolves demolished the IceHogs, scoring 4 goals in less than 12 minutes to start the game. Rockford’s starting goaltender Alec Richards denied any other goals to the Wolves in the rest of his 29:22 of ice team, but neither that nor Kent Simpson‘s steady 16 saves in 18 shots would help the IceHogs. Rockford did not get any shots past starting goaltender Eddie Lack in his 29:22, and they only got one past Matt Climie, leaving the final score at 6-1 on Kyle Beach‘s third period goal. Wolves forwards Brett Sterling, Steven Anthony, Darren Archibald, and Andrew Gordon; and defensemen Patrick Mullen and Yann Sauve took care of all the scoring for this game.
Their next tilt will be a rematch against the Rivermen, which will take place tomorrow at 7PM in the Triphahn Community Center and Ice Arena in Hoffman Estates. This will be their last home game for the preseason, with their last contest being a visit to the Milwaukee Admirals‘ home arena.
Finally, in Wolves news for the last week: the team has signed 28-year-old center Steve Pinizzotto. The forward did not appear in any games last season due to injury, but he’s ready to get back to the ice and he’ll be suiting up in the burgundy and gold with the Wolves. Previously, Pinizzotto spent time with the South Carolina Stingrays from the ECHL (2007-2009), and the Hershey Bears of the AHL (2006-2011), with whom he experienced the Calder Cup championship in 2009 and 2010.
As per team policy, terms of the deal were not disclosed.