Chicago Wolves (2) at Cleveland Monsters (3)
The fans streamed into Quick Loans Arena with bags of stuffed animals. Some bears were twice the size of an average eight-year-old. They were ready for the first goal so they could throw all of their stuffed animals on the ice.
A little girl on the glass next to the Monsters' bench held her stuffed Hello Kitty doll over her head in anticipation. She was determined to hold it there until one of the Monsters scored a goal. As the period went on, no goals were scored and the little girl's arms tired. Admitting defeat she finally put them down and held the cat in her lap.
It was a smart move on her part since no goal was to be scored in the first period.
At the start of the second period, the little girl did not hold the stuffed cat over her head. She just patiently waited for her time.
On the other hand, the crowd was starting to get restless. They wanted to throw the abundance of stuffed animals they brought on the ice.
Finally, five minutes into the second period, the Monsters would score the goal everyone was waiting to be scored. Hometown boy, Carter Camper went top shelf from the right faceoff circle.
The little girl excitedly launched her Hello Kitty onto the ice and then it began to pour. Stuffed animals rained down from every corner of the arena. Big ones, small ones, some as big as your head.
This wasn't Camper's first time unleashing the bears upon the ice but it was the most important one in his mind.
“I'm not gonna lie, that was pretty cool to be able to score the first goal in the 'Teddy Bear Toss' and like you said youth hockey night. It's great to be home. I'm not gonna lie, it was pretty special.” - Carter Camper
The Wolves would tie things up seven minutes and 21 seconds into the second period. Griffin Reinhart would launch a rocket from the blue line into the top left corner of the Monsters' net.
A little over a minute later the Monsters would regain the lead. Brady Austin would fire a shot from the blue line. The puck would bounce off the post and Kaskisuo's back. In an attempt to clear the puck out of the crease a Wolves play accidentally passed to Alex Broadhurst who was waiting in the crease. He would slam it home for the 2-1 lead.
It seemed as though no goal would be scored in the third period. Then, with a little under 10 minutes to play, Paul Bittner fired a shot into the left side of the net with such fury it bounced out.
The crowd roared with excitement. However, the lamp didn't light and the ref made no motion of a goal.
Boos rained down upon the refs.
Play continued on for a few minutes. Once there was a stoppage in play, Coach Madden requested a review of the Bittner play.
The refs headed to the penalty boxes and began to review the play.
Mere moments later the goal horn was blaring. Bittner's shot was a goal after all.
They now led the Wolves, 3-1.
With 40 seconds left in the game, Reinhart put the Wolves within one of the Monsters with another rocket from the blue line.
Time would run out before the Wolves could score a tying goal.
The Monsters snapped their five-game lose-streak with a 3-2 win over the Wolves.
But Wait! There's More
- John Ramage threw his body in front of multiple shots tonight. I'm talking secret service trying to protect the President of the United States kind of throwing his body around.
- The Monsters penalty kill looked great tonight. They held the Wolves to two or less shots each kill.
- Brady Austin has been a lovely addition to the team. He assisted two of the Monsters three goals. As well as, tried to set up multiple successful plays.
- Matiss Kivlenieks pulled out all the magic tricks in his bag tonight. He knocked shots out of the air like a kid playing tetherball. He slid across the crease at a moments notice like Tom Cruise in socks on a wood floor. You can shower Kivlenieks with accolades all you want but he will give much of the credit to his team.
“I think it's a big part from the team. They help me a lot and try to make it a lot easier.” - Matiss Kivlenieks
1st – Matiss Kivlenieks (38 shots faced, 36 saves, TOI: 59:50)
2nd – Carter Camper (1g,1a)
3rd – Brady Austin (0g, 2a)
Andre Benoit, Carter Camper, and Alex Broadhurst all wore the “A” during tonight's tilt.
Tonight was the first win on December 8th in team history for the Monsters.
Reinhart scored his two goals of the season tonight. Both of them were from the blue line.
This was Camper's second time scoring the first goal of a Teddy Bear Toss/Chuck-A-Bear night.
The Monsters and Wolves are back at it tomorrow, December 9th, for a 1 pm puck drop. The first 2,500 kids, 14 and under, will get a free Castaway Bay Day Pass.
Don't forget to bring a new, unwrapped toy to put in the Toy Drive Bin!