Kelsey Wilson Scores In OT, Admirals Force Game 7

The Houston Aeros had won 11 straight playoff games that had gone in to overtime.

A new streak has started, courtesy of a Kelsey Wilson deflection 1:01 into the extra session, as the Admirals forced a game seven after a 5-4 win over Houston Sunday evening.

Ryan Thang’s shot from the point was deflected by Wilson as he was being worked over by Drew Bagnall in front of Aero goaltender Matt Hackett.

“He’s a real important piece for our team in terms of his character and his leadership,” Coach Lambert said.  “Since he has come back in game 5 of the Texas series, he’s played good hockey for us.”

Wilson’s goal capped a rollercoaster of a game that saw the Admirals score the first three goals, Houston score the next four, and then the Admirals score the final two.

“The game is 60 minutes, and they’re a good a hockey team,” Coach said.  “We did a good job getting ourselves a lead.  I thought we made a couple little mistakes and the puck ended up in the back of our net, and we just had to focus and regroup.”

The Admirals scored their first two goals with a little help from Aeros goaltender Matt Hackett.  Ryan Ellis scored his first pro goal with a shot from the point that went off of Hackett’s pads and trickled in next to the near post.

Gabriel Bourque scored his sixth of the playoffs with a shot from the far face-off circle that Hackett saved, but he lost where it went, and ended up kicking it into the net with his skate.

The Admirals made it a 3-nil lead with a power play goal from Roman Josi early in the 2nd period.  From the top of the near face-off circle, Mark Van Guilder had a wide open passing line, and fed a cross-ice pass to Kelsey Wilson.  He tapped it back just a touch to Josi who was pinching, and his shot beat Hackett top-right corner.

The rest of the period belonged to the Aeros, and the turning point seemed to be a bizarre play involving Roman Josi and the goalie Hackett.  During play, Josi was pushed into Hackett, and an Aeros defender and Hackett proceeded to take some shots at Josi.  Josi got back to his skates, only to be knocked down again.  Lots of chirping back and forth between the two teams.  While skating away Josi gave a soft shot to Hackett, who then followed Josi and an official to the far corner.  And Hackett gave a pretty hard shot back to Josi.  Leaving the crease to be part of an altercation?  Some goalies would be tossed for such an action.  Instead, Hackett and Maxim Noreau got two each for roughing, and Josi got two for goaltender interference and two for roughing.  We proceeded 5-on-5.

About four and half minutes later the Aeros put the first of three dents into the scoreboard in the period.  Taking advantage of an AWFUL long line change, Jarod Palmer had a shot from the slot that beat Jeremy Smith.  It was helpful that another Aero forward set a pick to take two Admirals out of the play, but it was a great shot by Palmer.

Noreau scored less than a minute later on a shot from the point that flat out beat Smitty, while there were five Admirals just standing around watching the play.

Jon DiSalvatore scored a power play goal amidst a lot of waving sticks, and Chris Mueller being a little late coming back to pick him up.  Nice pass by O’Sullivan and nice finish by DiSalvatore.

So we went to the third period, and the question was, who was going to come out with the most urgency?  The team on the verge of clinching, or the team on the verge of their season ending.

The Aeros ended up controlling most of the play, and were able to take the lead at the 9:32 mark of the period.  After a faceoff, there was a scramble in front of Jeremy Smith.  Smitty was on his belly, and the puck was sitting in the crease just to the right of his elbow.  Patrick O’Sullivan was there to tap it in.  The fourth unanswered goal for the Aeros.

“They gained momentum obviously, and they ended up taking the lead,” Coach Lambert said.  “We had a huge push from our guys.   I thought the Aaron Johnson hit helped turn things around a little bit in the third period.  We started getting back to playing physical like we were in the first period.”

And then with 4:44 left in the period, Chris Mueller was able to stop the bleeding.  Mueller picked off a clearing attempt in the offensive zone, but couldn’t control the puck.  Ryan Thang worked to get it, and then tapped it back over to Mueller, who had relocated to the slot.  His shot beat Hackett.

They allow 20 minutes for the overtime period, but the Admirals needed just the 61 seconds.  After controlling the first shift of overtime, the Admirals scored after the line change.

“I think our guys rose to that challenge and made sure that we stayed focused,” Coach said.


Flynn – Bartlett – Begin
Wilson – Mueller – Thang
Bourque – Van Guilder – Thuresson
Ryan – Hunter – Santorelli

Teemu Laakso did indeed return to the ice, and Grant Lewis was scratched in his stead.

Ryan Ellis’ head was the recipient of a demonstration of Newton’s 3rd law of physics.  Andreas Thuresson had a big hit on Justin Falk along the boards.   Ellis was pinching down, tried to also hit Falk, and 6’5 Falk’s shoulder met 5’10 Ellis’ noggin. Ellis stayed on the ice for about half a minute, but skated to the bench on his own power, and after a trip to the locker room, hit the ice again later in the 3rd period.

Speaking of Ellis, I thought he played a pretty good game.  He looked a little more comfortable in the offensive zone, and was able to bail himself and some teammates out on some rushes against Smitty.

There was lots of Aero contact with Smitty, but I think he did his fair share of hamming it up too.  Still, he did get peppered a few times.

The three stars were all messed up.  They presented Wilson, Josi, and Mueller….and the box score says Wilson, O’Sullivan and Smitty.  DiSalvatore had a great game, and had a goal and two assists.  Noreau was sharp.  Thang had four assists.  Meh.  There are worse things to pick on.

Who stood out for you tonight?

Did you think they had it in them?

Happy to see Laakso back?  Bummed that Lewis was the odd man out?

Thoughts on the power play performance?  2 for 4 for the good guys.  Anyone toasting some Mountain Fury right now?  Weren’t we supposed to do some kind of giveaways for that stuff?  I’ll have a word with Sutty….he’s our fake director of corporate sponsorship.

Admirals still outshot….33-23 tonight.  For the series, Admirals have been outshot 203-128 in the six games.  Nice save % numbers for Smitty….but that’s really the only silver lining to that.

Anything else you’d like to share about the game?

See you Tuesday.

30 thoughts on “Kelsey Wilson Scores In OT, Admirals Force Game 7”

  1. Begin was a huge spark plug and really led this group through the best 1st period this post season!!! Great job wilson getting to those dirty areas and screen hackett! Let’s continue the story tuesday!! Go Ads!!!!!!!!!

  2. I really wondered if they had it in them after coughing up the 3-0 lead, can’t wait for game 7!! I don’t know enough about putting hockey lineups together- but is it unusual to have players with the letter on the front of the jersey (C-Palin and A-Johnson) not to be starting? Came out with great energy and hits in the 1st period. 2nd may have been the worst of the series. Finally got the energy back in the 3rd with the Johnson hit. Hopefully we get a few more fans there on Tueseday.

  3. So what was the deal with the so-called “SCOUT” for Houston doing in the tunnel next to the goal judge all game on the South End?? For one he was definitely relaying messages to the bench about things happening on the ice he had a frickin earpeace and a mic on his jacket. And if he was a scout should he be pounding the glass and talking shit to MKE fans?? I noticed this since he was 5 ft from me

  4. First Period. Great Admirals hockey. Quick, physical and controlled.

    Second usual not so good.
    Im glad im not the only one to see the “picks” they were setting and eventually scoring on. The Aero going over the top of Laakso was rediculous…Laakso never saw him coming and was playing the puck, Aero player had his eye on Laakso the entire time. Completly took him out of the play and allowed a clean shot for the first goal. interference????
    The Josi-Hackett ordeal was horrible call in my opinion. How did Josi earn 4 minutes being pushed into Hackett and beaten up. Hackett should have received 2 minutes Roughing and a 2 minute misconduct. Noreau 2 minutes roughing. MAYBE Josi 2 minutes to make Houston feel better. Putting Disalvatore in the box and then pulling him out to put Palmer in instead, then they have the benefit of a full bench while Josi served the final 2 minutes.
    Palin getting interference for driving Aero into Smith…how was that any different than the Josi play?

    Ben Ryan looked kinda lost but hes quick and he hustled.
    Surprised that Beck did not play.
    Laakso was a very welcome addition.

    Glad we finally got movement on the power play.. almost looked as good as when we had Josi, Blum, Geoffrion, Klasen and Halischuk out there. Good to see Ellis finally get his first, although kind of surprised i didnt see anyone grab the puck for first professional goal.

    Think we will have reinforcements coming?

    Game 7 should be a great game either way

  5. TATER,
    Can you explain a little more on what he was doing. We heard a tiny bit about this but since you were right there we would love to hear more.

  6. Kind of going with what TATER was saying, we sit in 206 row B, relatively close to that guy as well. We saw the ear piece and the trash talking, however we never heard what he was saying into the ear piece. Maybe just talking to another scout with a different vantage point??? Who knows, I’m a sucker for giving people the benefit of the doubt.

    Anybody else leave tonight with a sour taste in their mouth? To me it felt like another game we won, but probably shouldn’t have. I guess I should just be happy with the “W” and go form there, but that 2nd period really scared the hell outta me.

  7. Having been out of town for the weekend, I’m sorry to have missed this game. It sounds like it was a real nail biter.

    Thanks for the recap, Ryan. After reading it, I found one paragraph that helped sum it up for me. To quote: “Ryan Thang’s shot from the point was deflected by Wilson as he was being worked over by Drew Bagnall in front of Aero goaltender Matt Hackett.”

    Huh, imagine that. Someone in front of the friggin’ net, putting the screws to Hackett and keeping Bagnall busy. Where was this all season. We’re usually chasing around in circles. It’s amazing how the ‘system’ that works so well keeps on changing.

    Go Ads!!

  8. My sources tell me that Laakso has been called up yet again, but should be back for the next Ads game. Just seems stupid to me…

  9. Why is it stupid? The Preds have 6 d-men. If one gets hurt (takes a puck off the foot during practice/warmups, etc.) they’ll be playing with only 5 d. Makes complete sense to me for them to be prepared for worst-case-scenario situations.

    Game 7 is probably going to be a chess match. We adjust our game, Houston adjusts theirs, we adjust ours, they adjust theirs, etc… it’s going to come down to coaching (who makes the proper adjustments and when), and who wants it more. In OT last night we sure looked like we wanted it. If we keep that kind of determination and effort, we should be good.

  10. If the predators lose tonight, will all our guys be back for Tuesday (Geoffrion, Blum, Laakso, etc.)?

  11. What a heart attack of a game. Where to start, well the admirals did exactly what they needed to do to start the game. Score first and build a lead. But when your opponent gets frustrated, it gets chippy and the officiating gets questionable you can’t get sucked into that lose focus and stop playing. The vets are just as guilty as the rookies for that.

    When it was 3-1 I didn’t feel comfortable and to quote obi-wan kenobi I said I have a bad feeling about this. But getting physical again and making Houston pay on a mistake to tie the game was a great lift. I loved the approach in ot. No messing around, get to the front of the net, ads live to fight another day. And boy does Houston complain a lot. At least twice I saw one player chatting up a zebra while another was chatting up the second zebra.

    Smitty, what can you say. Really if it wasn’t for him we wouldn’t be in the second round. I believe if dex was healthy he’d be playing the same way but after this performance so far, and depending on what happens with dex smitty has to be at least the #2 if not our starter.

    Call me selfish, but go canucks.

  12. Another crazy game. The Ads had it after one, it was Houston’s after two, and we evened up in the 3rd. Glad the Ads took it early in OT and thought they played hard in the 60 seconds of it.

    Nice game by the usuals – Mueller, Thang, Borque, Smith, etc.

    Very nice to see Wilson get in a game like this – I felt he really lifted his play for this game and kudos to Ellis on his first goal here.

    Santorelli looked good too but I’m keying on two plays that he carried the puck into the attack zone and took the shot (decent lane). Ryan played with a lot of hustle. Hunter was ok. Those three were really fired up and played hard a few games ago then turned in a dud in the next. I like them playing in this series if they keep up the energy and hustle.

    Coach didn’t take any of our advice we offered on the lines from the last discussion.

    Didn’t like Flynn in this game, he seemed hesitant.

    At least through the first period and a half, the puck seemed slow on the ice and it had both sides a little off timing.

    Still too many shots by Houston / not enough for the Ads and the D didn’t challenge and press at the blue line enough I thought.

    I’ve wondered how it impacts the mindset if the Preds lose and we happen to get some guys back for Tuesday. How do they handle the transformation from just getting knocked out of the playoffs to needing to keep up the drive these playoffs.

  13. > Didn’t like Flynn in this game, he seemed hesitant.

    Agreed. I would have liked to see Lewis play as a 7th d instead of Flynn.

  14. Taylor-I don’t know but I certainly hope so considering I have heard that both Laasko and Mueller were called up to Nashville after last night’s game. I haven’t seen it reported anywhere today but they are both currently listed on Nashville’s roster. Good for them but ugh. We do not need to lose them for Game 7!

  15. Wow, hate to turn against nashville after obviously cheering for them all year, but if them losings gets us half of our team back, I have to want them to lose.

  16. I overheard from the people that sit across the aisle from me next to the tunnel he was telling coaches about penalties and things going on in the corners that they could not see broken sticks, penalties, just stupid stuff but still I’ve never seen any team do this and when he did it the most was when HOU scored 3 goals in 4 minutes coincidence? Maybe but I doubt it. he was talking trash and jumping over our skeleton crew girls to bang on the glass. He was a douche and was talking trash to me a little, but he didn’t like the cowbell ringing in his ear when we tied it a 4 and me yelling at him to START the BUS after Wilson scored he looked like he wanted to come in the stands but refrained. Real classy if his AEROS personnel just hoping he’s back tomorrow. I know Charlie came to talk to him at the start of the 3rd and said he can stay there. Does anyone know if there is a rule on this???

  17. We are losing laasko and mueller for tonight? NOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO

  18. Yeah Ryan, the dude in the suit next to the photographer is who I was talking about as well.

  19. I have one free ticket for the Tuesdays game, if you can use it post back and I’ll leave info. Available until I get rid of it.

  20. Its gona be really nice to have blums shot on the power play. Halischuk and geoffrion should give us a big offensive spark. Any word on klasen?

  21. But shop up for yourself treasures in ecstasy,
    where moths and vermin don’t demolish, and where robbers do not break-in and take.

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