Wolves defeat Flames behind Lehtonen’s near-shutout

Link to Tuesday’s boxscores

Alexandre Giroux scored twice and goaltender Kari Lehtonen came within 10 seconds of a shutout in the first start of his conditioning assignment as Chicago downed Quad City, 4-1, on Tuesday at the Allstate Arena. Lehtonen, a two-time AHL All-Star with the Wolves, stopped 27 of 28 shots to help Chicago improve its record to a league-best 16-2-1-0.

Giroux scored Chicago’s first two goals of the game. He tallied a power play marker at 8:08 of the first period and added an even-strength goal at 19:01 of the second. Steve Martins assisted on both goals, and Lehtonen picked up a helper on the first one.

Joel Kwiatkowski and Jason Krog built the lead to 4-0 with third-period goals, and Brett Sterling assisted on both tallies.

The Flames broke up Lehtonen’s shutout bid on a power play goal by defenseman Adam Pardy at 19:50 of the third period.

The game marked Lehtonen’s first AHL action since the 2005 Calder Cup Finals, which the Wolves lost to Philadelphia.

In that 2004-05 season, Lehtonen was named a Second-Team AHL All-Star after posting a 38-17-2 record with a 2.27 goals against average and a .929 save percentage in 57 games. He earned a spot on the PlanetUSA squad at the AHL All-Star Classic in both 2004 and 2005.

Lehtonen is 58-43-9 with a 2.84 goals against average and a .910 save percentage in 115 career NHL games, all with the parent Atlanta Thrashers.

Janne Niskala, Dave Scatchard, and Rich Peverley all scored in the third period to lead visiting Milwaukee to a 5-4, come-from-behind win over San Antonio at the AT&T Center.

Antti Pihlstrom and Mike Santorelli also scored for the Admirals. Santorelli and Peverley each added an assist, and goaltender Pekka Rinne made 27 saves in the win.

Milwaukee pulled even on its five-game road swing at 2-2-0-0.

The Rampage took a 4-2 lead into the second intermission as Joel Perrault, Bryan Helmer, and Curtis Fraser all lit the lamp in the second period.

Joey Tenute also scored for San Antonio, his goal coming in the opening period.

Defenseman Bryce Lampman netted the game-winner in the third period as Iowa rallied past Houston by a 3-2 final at the Wells Fargo Arena.

Iowa, which snapped a three-game winless skid at home (0-2-1), also received goals from Janos Vas and James Neal.

The Aeros got out to a 2-1 lead late in the first period on goals by Petr Kalus and Troy Riddle, with the later coming unassisted at 19:45 of the stanza.

Neal tied it for the Stars with a power play goal at 19:59 of the second period, and Lampman’s game-winner followed just 26 seconds into the third. It was Lampman’s first point in his fourth game since joining Iowa from the Norfolk Admirals.

Iowa goaltender Tobias Stephan improved to 6-4-0 with 24 saves on 26 shots.