Trailing 2-0, heading into the third period, the Wolves offense sparked for two goals in the final 20 minutes to send the game to overtime, but Hamilton goaltender Cedrick Desjardins thwarted all four shots in overtime and four of five attempts in the shootout to skate away with the win.
The loss marked just the second in the last 10 games for Chicago (28-17-0-3), which has pulled itself back into playoff contention with 11 wins in 14 contests during the month of January.
"We were down two and came back and got a point and I'm very happy with that," said Wolves Head Coach Don Lever. "It's disappointing not to finish it off, but we were much more aggressive in the second half of the game and got a point against a good hockey team, and every point counts these days."
Left wing Brett Sterling cracked the Wolves scoring drought, 63 seconds into the third period to put the team within striking distance, 2-1. The forward took a pass from center Jason Krog and managed to knock it past Desjardins, despite falling forward across the crease.
With five minutes remaining in regulation and Chicago working on the power play, defenseman Nathan Oystrick cranked a shot from the blue line, which blew past a screened Desjardins to knot the score, 2-2, and send the game into overtime.
Desjardins (19-6-2) made 34 saves in regulation and overtime to help Hamilton to victory.
Hamilton (30-12-3-4) used a four-on-three power-play late in the first period to open up scoring when defenseman Andre Benoit ripped a high shot past Wolves goaltender Kari Lehtonen, glove-side.
The Bulldogs pulled ahead, 2-0, with less than a minute remaining in the second period. Center Ryan Russell flung a shot at Lehtonen, who moved to stop it but just missed making the save.
Lehtonen (1-1-1) turned aside 24 of 26 shots in regulation and overtime, and stopped three of five attempts in the shootout.
The Wolves travel to British Columbia next week to face the Abbotsford Heat on Thursday at 9:30 p.m.
Hamilton 1 1 0 0 (1) -- 3 (SO)
Chicago 0 0 2 0 -- 2
First Period---1, Hamilton, Benoit 5 (Desharnais, Subban), 13:45 pp. Penalties---Glumac, Hamilton (goaltender interference), 12:59; Chelios, Chicago (roughing), 12:59; Crabb, Chicago (tripping), 13:05; Benoit, Hamilton (hooking), 19:22.
Second Period---2, Hamilton, Russell 10 (Belle, St. Denis), 19:02. Penalties---Holzapfel, Chicago (hooking), 4:01; D'Agostini, Hamilton (interference), 6:00; Henry, Hamilton (cross-checking), 9:47; Anderson, Chicago (cross-checking, unsportsmanlike conduct), 9:47; Stewart, Hamilton (roughing), 13:47; Holzapfel, Chicago (slashing), 17:01.
Third Period---3, Chicago, Sterling 26 (Krog, Galivan), 1:03; 4, Chicago, Oystrick 7 (Stapleton, Sterling), 15:21 pp. Penalties---St. Denis, Hamilton (delay of game), 14:48.
Overtime---None. Penalties---Henry, Hamilton (cross-checking), 4:52.
Shootout---Hamilton: Trotter, miss; Subban, made; Pyatt, miss; Pacioretty, miss; Belle, made. Chicago: Stapleton, miss; Doell, miss; Chelios, miss; Crabb, miss; Stewart, made.
Shots on goal---Hamilton: 9-11-6-0--27. Chicago: 14-9-9-4--36. Power plays---Hamilton: 1-4. Chicago: 1-5. Goalies---Hamilton, Desjardins (34-36). Chicago, Lehtonen (24-26). A---15,532. Referee---Kyle Rehman. Linesmen---Roger Behling and Al Stensland