Aeros sink Ads 5-2 as offense continues to sputter

Photo by Scott Paulus

Photo courtesy of Milwaukee Admirals

That wasn’t the start we were hoping for.

Another loss (one very similar to last Friday’s 5-2 contest against Chicago) ended a week-long break for Milwaukee and kicked off the stretch of six home games in 10 days.

Depite a glimmer of hope right out of the gates, the Ads’ offense ultimately started slow and wasn’t able to recover after digging a big hole despite a well-played third period.

Milwaukee’s newest face, left winger Michael Liambas, started his AHL career with a bang. On just his second shift, Liambas dropped the gloves to announce his presence and showcase his knack for fighting. In the end, Liambas pulled the taller Ryley Grantham to the ice.

Coach Dean Evason talked about what Liambas brought early and the role he expects him to play.

Cam Reid opened the scoring with his second goal in as many games about three minutes later. Taylor Beck fed Reid with a nice pass from behind the net and he put it in past Matt Hackett easily.

The Aeros answered at 11:09 when Justin Fontaine fired an unassisted shot from the slot that beat Jeremy Smith cleanly.

With 5:39 left in the period, Jason Zucker was called for roughing, giving the Ads their first power play. Just a few seconds in, however, a diving Chris Mueller unintentionally tipped a pass to Houston’s Carson McMillan that set up a 2-on-1 rush the other way.

McMillan fed it to MacDonald and MacDonald whipped it back to McMillan who beat Smitty right in front for the shorty.

The next 20 minutes were pretty uneventful as the Ads killed off a five-minute boarding penalty to Daniel Bang and whiffed on a couple of power play chances.

Houston added to its lead with 1:14 left in the second period when Zucker fired a wrister from the left circle that went in off Smitty’s glove. Milwaukee finished up the second down 14-4 in shots.

It didn’t get much better seconds into the third, when Kyle Medvec made it 4-1 on a shot behind Smith from the far left.

At 3:19, the Ads showed some life, finally scoring on the power play when Austin Watson pulled off a spinning shot from point blank. Austin Watson swats in the goal. Try saying that five times.

Despite outshooting Houston 15-6 in the final 20 minutes, the Ads couldn’t rally. Smith left the net with about 2 minutes left, but Fontaine grabbed an empty netter to seal the deal with 1:08 left.

Evason said the team’s sense of urgency really needs to improve as these last two games have shown.

The loss was a blown chance to gain ground on the Aeros who currently sit in the eighth spot in the West. With five games left in the homestand, Evason reiterated that Milwaukee needs to capitalize on home ice.

Questions:

Coach said the lack of offense was more to blame for the loss than Smitty’s night, but what did you think? He made some big saves, but were those goals against all good ones in your opinion?

What did you think of Liambas in a Milwaukee uni for the first time? He obviously showed a lot of physicality, but made some really nice plays on the puck as well.

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10 Responses to Aeros sink Ads 5-2 as offense continues to sputter

  1. manofsteele says:

    Scott Paulus wasn’t photographer tonight.

  2. Trey Killian says:

    Thanks for the catch. Just assumed he was as usual.

  3. Winchester needs to change back to #47. He did so much better with that number in his first few games.
    Not sure why we need an enforcer. We need goal scorers not fighters. Let’s play hockey.

  4. Ouch! says:

    Just when you think that it couldn’t get worse, it does. I don’t know what’s wrong with this team, so if anyone does, I’d surely like to hear it. Hell’s bells, this is worse than junior hockey. Even management is betting they won’t make the playoffs, considering their offer of ‘pay 1/2 down on next year’s season tickets, and the first round of the playoffs is free’. These guys will be lucky to make it to the end of the regular season, let alone the playoffs.

    The only good thing that came from last night is that Smith was left to finish the game and take the loss. No one could claim a job well done in that game.

  5. admiralfreak says:

    Can we go back to the old power play lines? At least they were just ineffective. These new PP lines have been lucky to only give up one SH goal and have been 2 for 23 (since the last HOU game).

    Also, I’d like to see Evason show some emotion (other than chewing his gum) to try and fire up the team. He may be doing more, but every time he’s shown on the Jumbotron, it’s always the same thing (not much of anything).

  6. Goon says:

    We need somebody like Liambas. We get out
    Muscled every game,Latta has all the penalty min. We need Liambas ,he follows threw with all his checks unlike half of are team. Winchester needs to go get his number 47 back he looked better then.

  7. Hockey says:

    Liambas had a great game. Showed lots of emotion, got into a fight, and every shift he was on they had a scoring chance. In my books he had a good start to his ahl career.

  8. frontrowjon says:

    The problem this collection of players has is that they all are pretty much mid-level to below average. besides mueller and watson we dont have guys that scare anyone into saying “watch out for….(haydar,santorelli, pirri) he’s always a threat to score” . No one we have Beck who at times looks ready to step up and at times like on the short handed goal looked like a clown and didnt do anything to impead the goal scorer, stick lift or hell take the penalty and trip his ass, not like our pp is gonna score the way it was. i feel the coach has a locker room divided, guys who are gonna stick by the coach and his plan and guys who are in the “Meh, if i score cool if we lose oh well” camp and what you get with that is this crap we have to sit through for 60mins. ways to improve powerplay as soon as its announced over the PA, circus or clown music should start up and play softly all the way through. its slightly embarassing watching this “show” on ice they make you really hope for a full organizational shake up ie: trotz fired and new mentality of actually winning instilled in nashville. ive never understood how the management and fans and players seem to be ok with so many years of failure under one guy for this long, most teams like detroit, boston, chicago would have had ol’ tubby out on his rear a long time ago.

  9. Fan in the Falls says:

    I have to agree with frontrowjon in that there needs to be a shakeup of some kind in the Preds organization. Nashville is not doing that bad, but the Admirals players are supposed to be their future, so if they do not realize that something needs to change with their prospects then there is much more wrong in the NP camp than I thought.

  10. Sodbusters says:

    I also agree with frontrowjon, we came in to the season with no stars and mid level guys. I loved the last few years with Stortini and the year before Guite. Guys getting back to the big show. Tis year they are all vanilla. We also need a coach down from the NHL needing to get back. This year they will not make it to the playoffs PERIOD. And I’m a season ticket holder, which means I will be there for the team . I am also not clinical, but a realist.

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