The Milwaukee Admirals lost 3-2 on the road against the Ontario Reign at the Citizens Business Bank Arena on Saturday night.
On a night when results were such in the Central Division that the Admirals really needed a win to keep pace: they lost. The Admirals power-play went 0/6 tonight which includes a five-on-three chance of 1:45. Their inability to produce with the man advantage has hurt them this weekend.
After a stellar double leg takedown by John Ramage on Austin Wagner – both would require a seat in the penalty box. This meant four-on-four hockey and that’s where the Reign grabbed a 1-0 lead.
Philippe Maillet was battling in the right wing corner with Joonas Lyytinen but worked himself free as Lyytinen fell. Michael Mersch would work a pass to the wide open Maillet in front of the net and he would score his fifteenth goal of the season.
The Admirals had a five-on-three power-play chance that spanned 1:45 in the first period. It came and went but they didn’t beat themselves up. In the final three minutes of the first period the Admirals would score twice in the span of forty seconds to take a 2-1 lead.
The opening goal from the Admirals was a tic-tac-toe play across the ice starting from the left wing. Mark McNeill passed to center for Tyler Moy who guided the puck across to Yakov Trenin on the right wing where he snapped a shot clean past Cal Petersen for his fourth goal of the season.
After a face-off win, Emil Pettersson put a puck back towards the right point for Jack Dougherty. He would take a shot from the wall near the blueline and Brandon Bollig got the net-front redirect to score his first goal as a member of the Admirals and his ninth of the season.
The Reign would level things at 2-2 in the second period. T.J. Hensick spun-around and put a shot towards the net. There was a lot of traffic out in front of Troy Grosenick and the shot deflected up off of Wagner and in for his seventh goal of the season.
This would be followed later in the second period by another deflection goal for the Reign. This time Hensick would be the man getting a deflection after a shot from the right wing circle by Sean Walker. The tally from Hensick was his eleventh of the season and gave the Reign a 3-2 lead.
The Admirals would get a golden opportunity to tie the game up late. Brett Sutter flipped a puck out of play and the Admirals had their sixth power-play chance of the night. Much like had been the case all night? That power-play went bust and did so even after Grosenick came to the bench to bring out an extra attacker. The Admirals were blanked on all power-play chances on the evening and lost 3-2.
The Admirals finished off the three-game California road trip with a record of 1-2-0-0. The defeat tonight coincides with wins from the Rockford IceHogs and Iowa Wild. They will return to the UW-Milwaukee Panther Arena on Tuesday night when they will see the Central Division’s fourth placed Grand Rapids Griffins. The Admirals trail the Griffins now by four points. The head-to-head showdowns this coming week will be huge.
Ramblings: Since the Milwaukee Admirals played last night there was no roster movement made by the organization. Tonight’s line combinations and defensive pairings were: Zolnierczyk-Smith-Butler, Richard-Gaudet-Gaudreau, Bollig-Pettersson-Zengerle, Trenin-McNeill-Moy, Oligny-Dougherty, Lyytinen-Granberg, Carrier-Ramage. Tonight’s scratches included: Fred Allard (undisclosed), Cody Bass (upper-body), Justin Kirkland (undisclosed), and Trevor Mingoia (healthy).
What is your reaction to tonight’s game? Why is the Milwaukee Admirals power-play so ineffective? How would you rate this road trip for the Admirals?
Be sure to keep updated with Admirals Roundtable through social media platform of your choice: follow along on Twitter, like us on Facebook, get photo updates on Instagram, and listen along on SoundCloud.