MILWAUKEE (WITI) — The Admirals lost 5-1 against the Grand Rapids Griffins at the BMO Harris Bradley Center Friday night. The game slowly dissolved into an offensive display for the visiting Griffins. The away side received goals from four different players en route to chasing the reigning CCM/AHL Goalie of the Month Magnus Hellberg out of the cage. On the opposite side, Grand Rapids received a solid 31 save performance in net by Petr Mrazek.
Grand Rapids opened the scoring with a power-play tally at 7:31 of the opening frame. Griffins defenseman Brett Skinner held the blue line, briefly delayed, and teed up a one-time blast by Francis Pare. The slapper by Pare flew past Hellberg on the blocker side and gave the Griffins a brief lead.
The Ads would answer back at even-strength just one minute and twenty-seven seconds later. A Milwaukee dump in would be fumbled behind the cage by Griffins goalie Petr Mrazek. The blip of an error was fastly capitalized on after Josh Shalla hounded Mrazek and the puck sprawled out into the offensive zone. Defensemen Joonas Jarvinen quickly tossed the puck to the net and found the stick blade he was looking for courtesy of Patrick Cehlin. It was Cehlin’s seventh goal of the season and first since 12/9/2012 in a road contest with the Charlotte Checkers.
The second period started with a quick rush by the Griffins off the opening faceoff. In the space of nine seconds the puck moved from the faceoff, to the wall, corralled by Pare into an odd man break, and scored by Gustav Nyquist. The quick fire shot by Nyquist had just enough power behind it to squeak through Hellberg and reestablish the Griffins lead.
Things continued the way of the Griffins when they scored their second power-play goal of the contest at 5:14 of the second period. Jan Mursak ripped a blind wrist shot near the Griffins bench and the shot was deflected in by Luke Glendening.
Grand Rapids continued offensive pressure was rewarded with a beauty of a goal by Mursak. The Slovenian right winger stick handled and carved clean through Ads’ defense to slot a backhander through Hellberg. The resulting goal gave the Griffins a three goal advantage and was the end of Hellberg’s night in net, as he was replaced Jeremy Smith.
Midway through the third period, the Griffins caught the Ads in the midst of a line change to kick start a two-on-one opportunity. The puck was controlled from center ice by Nyquist, dragged on the odd-man rush, and fired through Smith on a wrist shot. The goal was Nyquist’s second of the game and 21st of the season.
With Taylor Beck and Scott Ford both our with injuries for the evening, Milwaukee fans had a look at Josh Shalla and the recently acquired Wisconsin native Joe Piskula. In his first game with the Ads, Piskula was a -1 on the ice and dropped the gloves for his new team.
The Ads take to the road tomorrow night (7:05pm) against the Rockford IceHogs. They will conclude their triple-header weekend with a rematch against the Griffins on Sunday (3:00pm) at the BMOHBC.