That’s head coach Lane Lambert after the IceHogs 2-0 victory over the Admirals Friday night.
Hannu Toivonen stopped all the shots he faced, and the IceHogs rode a power play and empty net goal to the victory.
“We didn’t play good enough. He made a couple of fantastic saves, yes, but we didn’t generate enough opportunities. I’m very bothered by this game. I’m disappointed in our push, and the fact that we in my mind, didn’t come out and generate enough passion or energy into this game, and there’s no excuse for it.”
The first two periods came and went as the Admirals and IceHogs failed to record any goals, drop the gloves or really dent the scoresheet in any way. The first period came and went in about 32 minutes real time and contained as many whistle stoppages as the Daytona 500. ‘bout as exciting as it also. (Note: not a NASCAR fan)
(Editor’s note: Sutty has been advised that he’s going to probably be flamed for that comment. -RM)
The second period also went by very fast, but did however contain the game’s first two penalties. Rob Klinkhammer went to the bin for a slash, and Brandon Pirri served a too many men on the ice penalty for the IceHogs. I bet right about now you are wondering why we are talking about two rather uneventful penalties and frankly the only answer I have is, whelp, because that was all that was noteworthy. Did the Ads have shots on goals? Sure. Did they have good chances? Yep. Are you wondering why I am still typing? Me too!
The third period was a little more eventful.
At the 6 minute mark, Toivonen made a save that I am sure will go on his highlight reel. With the Admirals driving the zone a centering pass was made in front of the net where the “down and out” Toivonen was able to sprawl out and knock the puck up into the air, eventually corralling it up, to the sadness of everyone cheering for the good guys. One of the best saves we’ve seen this year.
The stalemate was broken at the 12:41 mark of the third period, when Brian Connelly scored from just above the near faceoff circle. Earlier in the shift, Chris Mueller got hit in the face with or by something and went down. The puck was cleared; Mueller got up but was unable to get off the ice. Connely re-entered the zone with the puck, as the slow moving Mueller was trying to defend the play. Connelly wound up and sent the puck past a defensive Mueller and past a shocked Mark Dekanich for the first score of the game. Looked like it went off his helmet and in.
Coach Lambert doesn’t like the play that led to the penalty, that eventually led to the goal.
“We got caught out of position in the defensive zone and we had to slash. We’re in game 64 now. We work on positioning in the D zone all the time. And it’s times like now….like I say, you never know when five seconds is going to win or lose you a hockey game. Everything comes in to play. Everything. All the details.”
The Admirals pulled Dekanich with 1:23 left in the match and were unable to convert as the Icehogs added to their lead with an empty net goal by Igor Markarov during a much needed (but sloppy) Admiral line change. Klasen had to have been out there for 3 minutes.
Mark Santorelli was scratched…perhaps by his cat before the game, and did not play as a result of the injury. Shields, McBride, and Hunter played. And Klasen and Josi returned after missing some time.
Did I mention it was a fast game? It’s 9:31 right now as I’m typing this. We should just be finishing up the third period about now.
Roscoe should have been better at the axe throwing contest. I’m just saying.
Got to hand it to Dekanich and Toivonen. Both made some outstanding saves.
Not happy about losing to Rockford. Houston and Texas both lost in shootouts… so they inched closer, but Milwaukee holds on to 1st place. Except for the game on the 26th, we’ll be cheering for Rockford from here on out, though. Anytime they can beat someone else, that can only be good for us!
It’s a four game home losing streak now. Here’s the coach:
“In those four games we’ve lost at home, we’ve played well enough to win three of them. We’ve scored four goals in the four losses. Total. So you’re not going to win too many games when you score a goal a game.”
What kind of adjustment does the team need to make for Peoria Sunday?
“Have some life, energy, and passion.”
The question I’ll leave you with – Is Sunday evening against Peoria a MUST-WIN game to get the train back on the track?