Admirals Lose Amtrak Trophy To Wolves; fall 4-1

(Photo Credit: Scott Paulus)
The tailspin continues. (Photo Credit: Scott Paulus)

The Admirals lost 4-1 against the Chicago Wolves Friday night. The Amtrak Rivals came back to win their first game of the entire season after trailing in the second period. Jordan Binnington was dominant in net for the Wolves as he made thirty-nine saves to allow the Wolves to win this year’s Amtrak Rivalry trophy.

This game started off with a quick fight between Mike Liambas and Jacob Doty. A net front scrum in the Wolves end escalated into a bout between the two and there was at minimum one haymaker landed from each before the pair spilled to the ice.

Viktor Arvidsson’s twentieth goal of the season opened up the scoring in the first period. Anthony Bitetto was able to keep a puck in the Admirals attacking zone and passed up to Arvidsson. The Swede, skating away from his eventual target, wired a wrister over the glove shoulder of Jordan Binnington, off the crossbar, and down. Arvidsson joined Austin Watson and Colton Sissons as Admirals with twenty or more goals scored this season.

In the second period the Admirals pelted twenty shots on goal. The story was Wolves netminder Binnington who was lights out in the sandwich stanza. He was making some sensational saves and was responsible for the second period scoreline staying exactly as it was after the first frame.

After weathering the second period storm the Wolves equalized 2:20 into the third period. Jani Hakanpaa leapt up from the point to work towards the right wing of Mazanec’s cage. As he swooped down he dished to the net front presence of the first period combatant Doty who scored over the glove shoulder of Mazanec despite Joe Piskula draped all over him as the shot was released. It was Doty’s second goal of the season – all of which have come in Milwaukee.

Close to eight minutes into the third period, Mark Van Guilder went to swat a puck out of the air and got the puck followed by Pat Cannone’s face. The officials called a double-minor for high sticking on the play but failed to call a slashing penalty when Joe Pendenza had his stick swatted out of his hands. Shortly after Pendenza retrieved his stick the Wolves had scored a tic-tac-toe goal with Shane Harper sliding across the front of the net from the low left wing to score his thirty-first goal of the season.

With 2:25 remaining in regulation the Wolves capped off an odd-man rush to put the game out of reach. Harper was in a shooting position forever and a day before Magnus Paajarvi finally dropped back to him. The shot rifled past Mazanec for his second goal of the period and thirty-second of the season.

Adam Cracknell added an empty netter almost instantly following the Admirals decision to go for the extra attacker. It was his tenth goal of the season but it was pretty much unnecessary. Binnington only ever needed the Wolves to get him two back after Arvidsson tagged him. He stopped thirty-nine shots in the game. His performance allowed the Wolves to win their first game of the season after trailing heading into the third period. They were 0-25-3-1 before tonight.

Not only was the Admirals loss crushing but the rest of the league responded against them as well. The Toronto Marlies defeated the Rochester Americans 3-1 and the Hamilton Bulldogs won 4-3 over the Texas Stars. The Admirals no longer control their destiny and it is going to take something miraculous at this point to continue their playoff consecutive appearances streak.

Ramblings: Tonight’s scratches for the Admirals were Jonathan Diaby (healthy), Felix Girard (out for the season), Miikka Salomaki (out for the season), Zach Budish (healthy), and Pontus Åberg (healthy).

Did the officials get the Mark Van Guilder high sticking call right? Blown calls aside, where did the Admirals high rate of attack go from the second period to the third period?

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7 thoughts on “Admirals Lose Amtrak Trophy To Wolves; fall 4-1”

  1. Chicago came at us hard and we were on our heels the whole third. After the go ahead goal we should have used our timeout and regrouped instead we spent it to draw up a 3pt play ala NBA jam! We played hard for two periods and ran out of will in the third. Absolutely disgusting! Game was a microcosm of the season, start off good, had some mistakes but covered them up with the lead and good goaltending then crap out pants completely in the third. Evanson is terrible and shoulda been gone a while ago and I’m sorry Grant really took some dumb penalties as well he could also leave town and i wouldn’t be mad. Two more to go and the nightmare season will come crashing to the end!

  2. The call on MVG was one of the few that Jarrod “The Village Idiot” Ragusin got right. You hit a guy in the teeth with a stick and it will cost you more than 2 minutes. There were so many interference, holding, slashing and tripping calls on Chicago that were never made, it was ridiculous!. I knew that it would be a long night 45 seconds into the game when Milwaukee was called for an offside. Half the crowd was booing because it wasn’t even close. The second Admiral was 3 feet BEHIND the puck carrier.

    Mazanec stood on his head for 42 minutes, and maintained it for 7 or 8 more. Milwaukee could have scored 6 goals in this game, but only ended up with one. Watson had a breakaway where he could elude two Wolves defenders. He looked slow. Watson also muffed a wide open shot from the face off dot. Clune and Grant could not lift the puck over the leg pad on breakaways. Grant also had a 10 footer on a first period PP that he shot off of the blocker.

    I thought that Grant and Clune played well. Bitetto played well at times, but got knocked down a lot in the third period. Watson was disappointing. I don’t think he is ever being called up to Nashville.

    I have no idea why the Admirals were so outplayed in the third period. I did see Piskula and another Admiral get tripped on the same play at nearly the same time in the NE corner in the third period. I noticed that Piskula went to talk to Ragusin during an entire TV timeout. He pointed toward that corner with his stick. That is the longest that I have ever seen him talk to a ref.
    Bitetto was laying on the ice a lot in the third period. He was getting knocked down time after time, but nothing was ever called. The D-men get the offense started. If they are taken off of their feet, it is harder to get out of the D-zone and get the puck up the ice for shots on goal. The Wolves managed to clog the neutral zone even when they were shorthanded. That needs fixing.

    Evason should have taken his time out after the second or third goal that Chicago scored. He waited until after the 4th Chicago goal of the period and game was scored. Evason doesn’t seem to know what he is doing or just doesn’t care anymore. He needs to be Fired! With a different coach, maybe Stan Drulia, or Robert the usher, this team makes the playoffs with 40 wins. Instead, the Ads have 33 wins in 74 games and are in 9th place win 2 games remaining. They have played about 23 OT games and lost 13 of those. Another 6 or 7 points puts them in 5th place.

  3. I agree that Grant’s tripping penalty after he shot the puck off of Binnington’s right toe on the breakaway was really stupid. Pros should not be so easily frustrated. The third period penalty by Grant was equally stupid. Clune drew a penalty in the first period. He played smarter.

  4. May I simply say what a relief to discover a perspn that truly knos what they are talking about on the net.

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