(Editor’s note: A special treat for you tonight… Back in press row for an encore that nobody asked for, tonight’s recap was written with love, from the man, the myth, the legend, the still-technically-retired, the father of two, the former star of the Admirals Short Shifts blog…..Please welcome back to the keyboard, ERIC W KENT!)
(Also, just so you know….”RiverDogs”…..that’s a knock at Jsonline…..trust us…it’s funny)
The Milwaukee Admirals made sure they didn’t cough up a third period lead Friday night against Peoria. The best way to do that? Make sure you never have a third-period lead to begin with. The Admirals played from behind at the Bradley Center, ultimately tying the game late before earning a 3-2 shootout victory.
The Admirals, and most of the 4,744 fans in attendance, thought Milwaukee had taken the lead at 13:21 of the first period. Blake Geoffrion tried to stuff a wrap-around past Peoria netminder Ben Bishop. Bishop made the left pad save, but subsequent attempts by Gabriel Bourque appeared to have pushed the puck over the line. Bishop’s left pad, which presumably made the save, was clearly two feet deep in the net. Referee Joe Sullivan, however, thought the puck was covered before then and told Coach Lane Lambert the whistle should have been blown.
Peoria would succeed where Milwaukee failed and tallied twice in the period – and made sure Sullivan saw it. I’m going to call out Scott Ford a bit for the first one. He let Ryan Reaves get behind him in transition, and Reaves was able to flip a shot in off Mark Dekanich. The second goal sort of gets blamed on Andreas Thuresson for taking a dumb tripping penalty. The Rivermen scored on the power play with just 27 seconds left in the period.
Coach Lambert came out early during the intermission, and had a two minute conversation with Sullivan. They talked about Life, The Universe, and Everything. They talked about Ben Bishop, and they talked about why the Admirals hadn’t been credited with that goal.
I’m not sure if that conversation had a direct correlation or not, but the Admirals got to play most of the second period with a man advantage. Over the period’s first 13+ minutes, the Admirals had a man advantage for NINE of them. Five Power Plays gave the Ads plenty of opportunities to cut into the Rivermen’s 2 goal advantage. To say they had mixed results would be…um…kind.Power Play #1 – 1 SOG; 0 Goals Power Play #2 – 0 SOG; 0 Goals Power Play #3 – 4 SOG; 1 Goal Power Play #4 – 1 SOG; 0 Goals Power Play #5 – 0 SOG; 0 Goals
Sure, they got a goal on the third PP there – but I don’t think they’re too happy with the other four: a combined 0-4 with just 2 shots on goal. Of course, Lane is just happy they got on the board. He doesn’t want to think about how he would feel if they went through the entire game with just the one power play goal.
The Admirals tied the game with 6:53 left in the third due to a spot of well-timed luck. Jon Blum tried to initiate a dump-and-chase and fed the puck into the right corner. While Ben Bishop moved behind the net to intercept the puck, it hit a seam in the glass and kicked out into the slot – where Mark Santorelli was chasing the play. He popped the puck into the empty net to tie the game at 2.
The game would procede through overtime without any goals…and thus go to a shootout. Both teams scored on four of their first five attempts. Milwaukee’s Matt Halischuk scored to open round 6, putting the pressure on Peoria’s Phil McRae. The Rivermen center had Dekanich down on the ice, but his shot hit the crossbar and clanged away to safety – securing a hard-fought victory for the good guys.
-Mark Santorelli, Linus Klassen, Jamie Lundmark, Mark Van Guilder, and Matt Halischuk all scored on their shootout attempts. Roman Josi was denied.
-The second period featured 42 penalty minutes, including 5 for Blake Geoffrion’s first professional fight. At least, it’s in the books as a fight. It was more like 5 minutes for “getting your face punched in until Kelsey Wilson decked Ben Bishop and we had to stop”. The refs don’t have a signal for that, though, so they gave him fighting.
-Also in that period, Jamie Lundmark got swept up in a Peoria line change and shoved onto the Peoria bench; Halishuk was denied by Bishops’ right pad on a great breakaway chance; Roman Josi fired a shot from the point that hit Dean Arsene in the gut and he went down like a sack of potatoes; dogs and cats started living together; tractors stopped working; and planes started falling from the sky. It was mass hysteria.
-The Lines were a bit jumbled tonight – as Blake Geoffrion was demoted. He played between Mark Santorelli and Gabriel Bourque, while Steve Begin centered Andreas Thuresson and Linus Klassen.
-Mark Dekanich has now surrendered 2 goals or less in 7 of his 8 games this season.
-Chet Pickard got another chance to put his woes behind him for Cincinnati…and failed. He gave up three goals in the first 8 minutes against Trenton before being replaced.
-Some Coffee Talk for all y’all. Mark Dekanich’s numbers are the best of his career. Granted, it’s only been 8 games. But my question to you is this: Are we witnessing Mark Dekanich altering his NHL prospects?
-Another question: Where was your confidence level as the Admirals headed to a shootout? We all know their struggles are well documented.
-Finally: Does anyone even really miss me anymore? Reading this drivel can’t be good for your brain cells. And in case there are any doubts, or anyone out that that doesn’t want me to crawl right back into retirement, let me ask this:
Does anyone know what’s going on with James Sixsmith?