Admirals Fall in Grand Rapids, 3-1

(Photo Credit: Mark Newman)
(Photo Credit: Mark Newman)

The Milwaukee Admirals lost 3-1 on the road against the Grand Rapids Griffins Friday night at the Van Andel Arena.

It simply wasn’t a good game tonight for the Admirals. They set a season low for shots on goal in this game by only registering seventeen shots on goal against the Griffins tonight. Harry Zolnierczyk was able to negate what would have been the Admirals first shutout of the season with under three minutes remaining.

Tonight’s game was extremely sloppy. There were hardly that many scoring chances to be seen up until the midway point of the second period. Dylan Sadowy was able to avoid a poke check attempt by Juuse Saros to spin-around and deliver a quick shot through the Finn’s five-hole to record his first career pro goal and give the Griffins a 1-0 lead.

Things kept looking very bleak for the Admirals right up until the final three minutes of regulation when it appeared the Cardiac Kids were going to pull a rabbit out of the hat once again. Adam Payerl was able to set Harry Zolnierczyk loose for a breakaway that ended with a backhand to forehand finish. Zolnierczyk’s third goal of the season closed the books on Jared Coreau’s shutout bid.

With 1:20 remaining in regulation the Admirals called for Saros off the bench to get the extra attacker on. After getting an icing call against the Griffins the Admirals took their timeout with 33.8 seconds remaining to draw up a play with an in-zone face-off. It appeared the Griffins got let off the hook on what should have been an icing call. Instead, they were able to coral a puck deep in the Admirals defensive zone for an empty net tally for Eric Tangradi’s first goal of the season.

This ends the Admirals four-game road trip. They split the deck with two wins and two regulation defeats. Their record now stands at 14-4-2-1 (31 points, 0.738 points percentage). That record still stands as the best in the league.

As far as the Admirals go in Grand Rapids their woes continue. That is now their ninth consecutive loss on the road to the Griffins. They are 0-8-1-0 on that run with their last win coming back on 1/31/15 when Magnus Hellberg provided a twenty-six save shutout.

The Admirals return to home ice tomorrow night when the Chicago Wolves turn up for the next installment of the Amtrak Rivalry. That game starts at 6:00 PM CST. The Admirals then play against the San Antonio Rampage on Monday night at the UW-Milwaukee Panther Arena for a 7:00 PM CST start-time. That will be the last home game for the Admirals until Boxing Day.

Ramblings: Since the Milwaukee Admirals last played on Tuesday there has only been a single roster move made. Derek Army was released by the Admirals from his PTO Contract on Tuesday night and has since rejoined the Wheeling Nailers in the ECHL. Last night game for the Nashville Predators wasn’t pretty, losing 5-2 on the road to the Dallas Stars, but it saw Adam Pardy make his Predators debut and Marek Mazanec stop 18/19 in a relief appearance. Frédérick Gaudreau also logged the most minutes he has had of ice-time since his NHL debut. Tonight’s line combinations for the Admirals were: White-Smith-Åberg, Zolnierczyk-Kamenev-Payerl, Liambas-Girard-Bass, Richard-Florek-Görtz, Oligny-Carrier, Murphy-Dougherty, Diaby-Kessel. Tonight’s lone scratch was Justin Kirkland who was healthy.

Thoughts on tonight’s game? What is it about the Milwaukee Admirals playing in Grand Rapids? Will the Admirals be able to bounce back tomorrow night on home ice?

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