Rookie Patrick O’Sullivan netted his team-record third hat trick of the season and added and an assist, AHL leading scorer Kirby Law supplied three assists and Roman Voloshenko and Matt Foy scored in the final two rounds of the shootout as the Houston Aeros outlasted the Chicago Wolves, 5-4, at Toyota Center on Tuesday night.
Josh Harding made 28 saves for the Aeros (43-16-1-2), who increased their lead over second-place Milwaukee to four points in the West Division.
O’Sullivan scored 48 seconds into the game, then had a hand in all three Aeros goals in the second period, scoring a momentum-gaining tally with 0.7 seconds showing on the clock. The 21-year-old forward now has 39 goals on the season, including 20 in his last 21 games.
Kip Miller scored two goals and chipped in an assist for the Wolves, who saw their three-game winning streak halted. Chicago, which earned the point on Tuesday thanks to third-period goals from Kevin Doell and Ramzi Abid, remains four points back of Omaha for the fourth and final playoff spot in the West Division.
Law increased his lead in the AHL scoring race, with 88 points to teammate Erik Westrum‘s 86.
ROCHESTER 4, OMAHA 3 (SO)
Kamil Kreps scored in the eighth shootout round as Rochester won for just the second time in 12 games (2-9-1-0), 4-3 over Omaha.
Rookie David Moss had two goals and Mark Giordano recorded a goal and two assists for the host Ak-Sar-Ben Knights, who saw leads of 2-0 and 3-2 disappear.
Jiri Novotny and Mark Mancari picked up a goal and an assist each for the Amerks, who are now 10 points out of a playoff spot in the North Division.
Michael Leighton made 31 saves for Rochester, then stopped seven of eight Omaha attempts in the shootout — two against former Norfolk teammate Ajay Baines.
PEORIA 4, MILWAUKEE 0
Reinhard Divis made 27 saves and Peoria was a perfect 8-for-8 on the penalty kill en route to a 4-0 win in Milwaukee.
Ryan Ramsay, Brendan Buckley, Gavin Morgan and Blake Evans scored for the Rivermen, while Divis improved to 12-3-1 in his last 16 decisions with his second shutout of the season.
Morgan now has six goals in Peoria’s last three games.