Hamill scores in debut, Ads win third straight

Photo courtesy of griffinshockey.com

Photo courtesy of griffinshockey.com

Zach Hamill and Magnus Hellberg helped Milwaukee cling to the eighth spot in the Western conference, pacing the Ads to a 4-1 win in Grand Rapids.

Hamill, the newest member of the Admirals, helped the Ads’ longest-tenured member celebrate a special night with the victory.

Scott Ford played his 295th game with Milwaukee, which pushed him past Kelsey Wilson for the most games played for the Admirals in the team’s AHL history.

In his first game in an Admirals jersey, Hamill made an immediate impression with two points, while Hellberg stopped 31 of the 32 shots he faced in another solid start.

Griffins goalie Tom McCollum committed a delay of game penalty just 1:49 into the game, giving the Ads an early power play chance. Hamill Furied the Fury and got Milwaukee on the board with his 17th goal of the season. After a good pass from Patrick Cehlin to Mike Moore, Hamill deflected in Moore’s wide-open slapper.

At 17:41 Brad Winchester gave the Ads a two-goal cushion with the eventual game-winner.  Josh Shalla took away a pass along the boards and started a quick rush into the Grand Rapids zone. He hit Winchester in stride at the top of the right circle and his hard wrister beat McCollum glove side.

The Griffins cut it to a one-goal deficit 2:09 into the second period, as Brett Skinner scored right off a faceoff win. It was a bouncing shot that trickled in and caught Hellberg off guard, but it was the only one that found its way past the big goalie.

Hellberg would make 13 saves to keep Milwaukee up 2-1 heading into the third period, where the Ads would regain the two-goal cushion.

In his first game back from recent injury, Kevin Henderson let loose a blazing slapper from high between the circles that bounced in off McCollum.

A critical late slashing call on Luke Glendening put the Griffins in a deeper hole at 17:35 and Mattias Ekholm’s empty-netter just over a minute later sealed the Milwaukee win.

Here are the highlights courtesy of grifvision.

Notes:

Juuso Puustinen’s six-game point streak came to an end.

The victory was the Admirals’ 500th win in the franchise’s AHL history.

Fordo had a couple shots on net with nothing doing on his big night. Valentine also registered two shots in his fourth game at wing.

Moore ended up leaving the game with an injury. We’ll keep you posted on his status as we find out more.

Questions:

The new guys continue to fill in nicely for the Ads. While Moore did most of the work on Hamill’s goal, and his assist came on an empty-netter, it was nice to see Hamill position himself nicely to pick up some points.

What did you hear about or see in his game tonight that stood out to you? How big will his presence be should the Ads get into the playoffs?

What do these last three wins against Charlotte and Grand Rapids (the current fourth and third seeds respectively) mean for the team?

By battling to get in against higher caliber teams, do you think this recent run might give Milwaukee a competitive edge in the postseason (knock on wood)?

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5 Responses to Hamill scores in debut, Ads win third straight

  1. adsfan says:

    Milwaukee could get as high as the 5th seed. It is possible that they could play Charlotte or GR in the first round. The problem is that those teams score a lot more goals than the Admirals, which isn’t good in a long series. I think the 7th seed is most likely, which means Toronto instead.

  2. Griffin says:

    To say I am proud of this team would be an understatement. After the past few weeks of getting pillaged by Nashville, I thought, this couldn’t come at a worse time. But we seem to have come together since all the call-ups. And judging by the dire situation in Nashville where our boys have become the justification for all their foibles, I wonder if Bang, Watson, Beck, Mueller and Bartley would rather be down here. I am sure the paycheck is nice but it’s gotta be miserable up there.

  3. Yonkfan says:

    Why is the 8th seed the BEST case scenario? Are they mathematically eliminated from 7th place? Or 5th? No. They aren’t. They can still even win the division. But you think 8th is the best case scenario? Come on.

    Ekholm hasn’t scored goals in two straight.

    Henderson’s goal went in off of the iron, not the goalie.

    Hamill is not the newest member of the Admirals. Rask is.

    And what is that bit about the tiebreaker with Rockford???? The Ads have the tiebreaker because they have two more overtime losses? You obviously don’t grasp the tiebreakers well. OR you just have a tough time explaining them.

    Anything on Mike Moore’s injury? Do you even know that he was injured?

  4. pez77 says:

    Milwaukee has a 64.1% chance they will make the playoffs. Rockford and Chicago have a 22.8% to make the playoffs. Admirals magic # is 9.

  5. adsfan says:

    Yonkfan and pez77 are correct. The chance of 8th place is 35%, 7th is 15%, 6th is 6%, 5th is 2%. First and second are gone, but they could win the division. They are 6 points behind Grand Rapids with a possible 10 more points to win.

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