DES MOINES, Iowa – The Iowa Wild (22-22-6-4, 54 points) were defeated by the Rochester Americans (28-18-3-4, 63 points) 4-2 in front of 3,991 fans at Wells Fargo Arena on Thursday night. Americans forward Johan Larsson and defenseman Rasmus Ristolainen each tallied two points, leading Rochester to victory. Iowa forwards Zack Phillips and Tyler Graovac each picked up a goal as the club slipped to 10-15-3-1 at home. Americans goalie Nathan Lieuwen (15-7-2) made 21 saves as his club extended its points streak to five games (4-0-0-1). Iowa goalie Johan Gustafsson (8-13-2) stopped 31 shots in the loss. The Wild begin a five-game road trip starting in Milwaukee on Friday, Feb. 28 at 7 p.m.
The Americans picked up the lead at 4:03 of the first period on a goal off a defender’s skate and into the Wild net. Forward Johan Larsson was credited with the goal, giving his club a 1-0 lead. Rochester forward Kevin Porter and defenseman Rasmus Ristolainen each picked up an assist on the play. The Americans added another power-play goal at 13:13 by Mark Pysyk. The defenseman fired a slap shot from the blueline, giving his club a 2-0 lead. Ristolainen and forward Joel Armia each picked up an assist on Pysyk’s first goal of the season.
With 37 seconds remaining in the second period, the Wild got on the scoreboard with a goal by Zack Phillips. The forward tucked in a rebound past Americans goalie Nathan Lieuwen, cutting Rochester’s lead in half at 2-1. Iowa forward Carson McMillan assisted in Phillips’ 10th goal of the season.
Larsson added another goal at 9:26 of the third period, giving his club a 3-1 lead. The forward chipped in a shot through traffic for his 11th goal of the season. Forwards Jamie Tardif and Phil Varone each assisted on the play. The Wild countered again with a goal at 17:45 by Tyler Graovac. The forward skated in near the slot, rifling in a wrist shot past Lieuwen. Iowa defender Tyler Cuma and Gustafsson each picked up an assist, helping the team trim the Americans lead to 3-2. With 13 seconds remaining, Rochester forward Luke Adam scored an empty-net goal for the 4-2 final.