From: Ryan Stanzel
Director of Communications
Wednesday, November 24, 2004
713.361.7930 (Direct Line)
Lehtonen earns second straight shutout, 3-0 over Aeros
WOLVES 3, AEROS 0
Official Box Score
Kari Lehtonen made 39 saves for his second straight shutout and former Aero Cory Laroses goal 82 seconds into the game was all he needed, as the Chicago Wolves beat Houston 3-0 at Allstate Arena. Stephen Baby and Karl Stewart also scored for Chicago, which has won three of four.
Josh Harding turned aside 30 shots for Houston, which had its three-game winning streak snapped. The Aeros finished their five-game road trip 3-2-0-0 and return home to face Utah at 7:35 p.m. Friday on Cash/Prizes Night. Houston is winless in its last 10 trips to Allstate Arena (0-6-2-2), tying the franchise record for a winless streak in an opposing building.
Lehtonen, who shut out Cincinnati in his last start, ran his shutout streak to 161:48. The top-ranked NHL goalie prospect hasnt allowed a non-shootout goal since the first period of a 2-1 shootout loss in St. Johns November 13.
Houston has been blanked three times this season each time in one of Hardings starts.
The Wolves wasted no time getting on the board, and it was Larose, the former Aero, who did the deed only 1:22 into the game after J.P. Vigier forced a turnover. Larose skated to the top of the circle and blasted one over Hardings blocker for his sixth goal of the season.
Chicago made it 2-0 on Babys goal with 8:24 remaining in the opening period. Harding kicked out Kevin Doells initial attempt, but the 6-foot-6 Baby was there at the doorstep to poke the rebound past the netminder for his second goal.
Houston has allowed an AHL-high 24 first-period goals.
The Aeros came out of the gates quickly in the second period, with six of the first eight shots, but none got by Lehtonen.
Later in the period, a possible Houston comeback was thwarted after penalties three minutes apart to Rickard Wallin and Marius Holtet.
Aeros winger Derek Boogaard slid the puck between Lehtonens legs with three minutes left in the second, but the netminder was able to fall back before it crossed the line. A minute later, captain Kirby Laws attempt settled just shy of breaking the barrier.
All told, the Aeros had 17 shots on Lehtonen in a frantic middle 20 minutes.
Stewart pushed the lead to three goals with 6:28 left with his fifth tally of the season, pushing a rebound of a Brian Maloney attempt past Harding.
Houston finished 0-for-2 on the power play, while Chicago went 0-for-4. The Aeros have killed off 54-of-59 shorthanded chances over their last 11 games.
The Aeros scratched Chris Heid, Ray Giroux, Christoph Brandner and Pierre-Marc Bouchard.
Larose has six points (2-4=6) versus his former team.
Aeros veteran defenseman and alternate captain Todd Reirden returned after missing eight games due to injury. Reirden last played November 6 in Grand Rapids.
Houston has a trio of three-game winning streaks this season, but hasnt been able to get it to four.
The Aeros last won at Allstate Arena 5-4 in overtime January 15, 2003, and last won in regulation there April 7, 2002, a 4-3 decision.
Houston lost 10 straight in Milwaukee from March 22, 1995 to November 25, 2000.
The Aeros fell to 8-3-0-0 when playing the second or third game of a back-to-back situation.