Backbreaker; Ads lose 2-1 in OT

The Admirals lost 2-1 in overtime against the Chicago Wolves Sunday evening. There were plenty of shots mustered up in this one, 37-25 in favor of the Wolves, but the goaltending and defenses made this a tight contest. The Wolves scored the opener from a deflection. Taylor Beck answered on the power-play. Sadly, the Wolves jumped right to it twenty-seven seconds into OT to secure a win heading into the Christmas break.

The opening period was all Wolves. Fortunately for the Admirals no damage was done in a frame where they were outshot 15-7. Minimal quality chances were created by the Ads. The best effort came in the dying seconds when Colton Sissons had a shorthanded breakaway get shutdown by Wolves netminder Matt Climie.

After controlling the first and the opening minutes of the second, Chicago finally broke the scoreless draw after a deflection by Mark Mancari. Pat Cannone started the play off by skating in from the right wing wall and into the slot. From that position his snapped a low wrist shot that connected off of Mancari to beat Magnus Hellberg.

The Ads then took to the power-play after an interference call against Cade Fairchild. Taylor Beck, off the puck, moved towards the blue line and was picked out perfectly by Bryan Rodney from all the way in the Ads defensive zone. Beck caught the pass on his backhand, circled in on the net from the right faceoff circle, and beat Climie with a low shot to the stick-side for a power-play goal. That’s Beck’s seventh goal of the season and fourth scored on the power-play.

This game remained tight through the entirety of the third period and pushed its way into overtime. Unfortunately, just twenty-seven seconds into OT, the Wolves were able to squeeze a puck past Hellberg for the win. The veteran Keith Aucoin was able to skate in from the left wing, take a check from Joonas Jarvinen, and was played in front of the net by Alexandre Bolduc for a close range shot – and the game-winning goal.

In terms of the OT defeat, this ends a decent run put together at the start of the weekend. The Wolves were probably deserving of the win tonight with the amount of shots and chances established. Magnus Hellberg, who made his first start in over a week, played well tonight – stopping thirty-five of thirty-seven shots – and really played smooth in net in the pressure packed opening first period for the Ads. Might have wanted to be greedy and take all points tonight against the Wolves. Long term outlook though, this was a strong weekend for the team and a good response after last weekend’s Grand Rapids road trip.

Thoughts on today’s game? What happened to Filip Forsberg after his fiery return to game-action? Is Taylor Beck back to the form that got him to the NHL last season? Was this a good return to the net for Magnus Hellberg in your eyes – or would you judge him on not getting the wins right now?

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