Admirals Fall Behind Early; Lose to Wolves 3-1

(Photo Credit: Scott Paulus. Author: Nicholas Hatch.)

The Milwaukee Admirals lost 3-1 against the Chicago Wolves at the UW-Milwaukee Panther Arena on Saturday night.

The Admirals fell into an early deficit and couldn’t dig themselves out. A pair of costly penalties provided a chance for Brett Sterling to collect two power-play goals for the Wolves. Trevor Smith would break the shutout bid for Maxime Lagacé but the Admirals would drop the final pre-season contest.

Cody Bass kicked off the game with some fireworks. The veteran forward dropped the gloves with Chicago’s Mike Brown. Bass brought down Brown and we had our first scrap of the night just 1:22 into the game.

“That wasn’t planned,” said Cody Bass of the fight. “But it’s part of the game. It is what it is.”

The Wolves got on the board first as Kenney Morrison fired one past Anders Lindbäck with help from a double-screen. Lindbäck had difficulty seeing the puck through traffic which allowed Morrison the early goal.

Later in the first period the Wolves extended their lead with a power-play goal. Keegan Kolesar delivered a pass out to the left-wing circle from behind the net which perfectly set up Brett Sterling for a one-timer that beat Lindbäck high glove-side. Chicago left the opening period with a 2-0 lead and 10-8 shot advantage.

The Admirals managed to finally get on the board in the third period. Bobby Butler, from the left-wing pocket, beautifully fed Trevor Smith in front of the net to deny the Wolves a shutout and make it a 2-1 game.

The Wolves retaliated later in the third period, taking advantage of another power-play. For the second time in the game, the Admirals were caught with too many men on the ice. That led to Sterling netting his second power-play goal of the game on a wrister from the left-wing circle. The Wolves once again had a two-goal lead with a 3-1 advantage.

With 2:22 remaining in regulation the Admirals had a power-play which led to Lindbäck coming to the bench moments later to bring out the extra attacker. The late chance would come and go before the final horn would sound.

“I think we, as a group, we’ve got to take some positives out of that loss,” said Bass. “We did some good things. We did some bad things. But it’s still pre-season. We have to focus on Game 1 now.”

The Admirals pre-season has now come to a close. The 2017-18 season officially begins next Saturday when the Admirals travel to face-off against the Iowa Wild.

Ramblings: Prior to tonight’s game the Milwaukee Admirals reassigned Angelo Miceli and Trevor Mingoia to the Norfolk Admirals of the ECHL. They then released Erik Bradford, Brandon Denham, and T.J. Melancon from their professional try-out (PTO) contracts. Tonight’s line combinations and pairings were: Richard-Smith-Butler, Kirkland-Bass-Perfetto, Labrie-Pettersson-Kelleher, Vaive-Trenin-Moy, O’Brien-Granberg, Carrier-Allard, Lyytinen-Dougherty. Jimmy Oligny was the lone player absent tonight due to injury. Oligny is nearing game-ready after last season’s injury that required surgery.

What did you think of tonight’s game? Who impressed and didn’t impress? How did Anders Lindbäck look in net for the Milwaukee Admirals?

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