Admirals Sink griffins in OT 3-2|
Rally falls short...
By Jason Kasiorek
Grand Rapids battled back from a 2-0 deficit to tie the game in third, but couldn't hang on in the extra session as Cal Reilly scored the gamewinner less than a minute in. Miller, and Keller scored in the loss for the Griffins, and Jimmy Howard stopped 24 shots.
The Griffins got off to another good start in the first outplaying them and outshooting them, but were unable to beat Milwaukee's goalie Carl Goehring. Milwaukee got a break towards the end of the period when Staal crashed the crease and impeded Howard from making a save, carrying the puck and Howard into the net. Segal had taken the intial shot, and was credited with the powerplay goal. Shots on Goal: GR 10 - Mil 5.
The Admirals built on that momentum, and really came at GR in the second. Brendan Brooks got wiped out and was left on the ice bleeding but no penalty to Milwaukee. This was to be a common theme on the night as the Ads enjoyed 8 powerplays to Grand Rapids' 3. For the first half of the second Milwaukee kept the Griffins hemmed in their own end and unable to generate anything. A big hit led to a scrum along the far boards as play started to get very chippy. A series of penalties left GR killing a 5-on-3 powerplay, which seemed to jump start them a little. Miller had a great chance out front but fanned on the cross-ice feed. The Griffins hitting game was in full force by now with several crushing hits helping to swing momentum. Milwaukee raised their lead to 2-0 with 4 seconds left in the period when Howard made a great stop, but the rebound jumped right onto Leahy stick and into the net stick side for a PP goal. Shots on goal: GR 7 - Mil 16
Miller, Keller, and Bootland conspired on a great scoring play early in the third to break the goose egg. Bootland made a great play to get the puck deep, and Keller dished from behind the net to a waiting Miller who stroked it past Goehring, stick-side. GR kept at it despite some frustrating one-sided officiating, and Keller tied the score just past the 13 minute mark with his first of the season. Miller passed in front from behind the net and Keller won the battle with an Admirals defenseman for the puck, wristing it in low, glove-side. Insana had a great chance with time winding down when he put a shot on net from the slot that was stopped and jammed at until the whistle. Shots: GR 9 - Mil 3
The OT was really short, just 52 seconds in O'Reilly roofed an errant puck right at the edge of the crease for the game winner. Shots GR 0 - Mil 3. For the game: GR 26 - Mil 27.
Kolanos - McGrath - Brooks
Hussey/Brooks - Oulahen - Keller/Bootland
Miller - Langfeld - Bootland/Keller
Hussey - Ellis - Barney
Quincey - Meech
Syvret - Smith
Ericsson - #18 Insana
Himelfarb - Injured
Galvin - Injured
3 Mil Leahy
2 GR Keller
1 GR Miller
Miller - Ellis - Langfeld
Quincey - Keller/Syvret
Hussey/Barney - McGrath/Kolanos - Kolanos/Brooks
Barney/Meech - Syvret/Keller
Hussey - Ellis
Smith - Meech
Oulahen - Langfeld
Quincey - Ericsson
Bootland - Brooks
Ericsson used his size a little, throwing a couple of thundering hits, and holding off forwards with his reach and bulk.
Brendan Brooks looked feisty and effective playing with slick McGrath and Kolanos.
Howard has really shown he won't take any crap from anyone lately, punching a forward in the head for shoving him a few games ago, and now wielding his stick to keep his crease clear.
Kyle Quincey had a great night. He really played an aggresive, physical game, challenging shooters and playing airtight defense. A few more games like that and he may follow Filppula to Detroit.
Ryan Keller is showing signs that he may actually be a player at this level and played another impressive game. Showed some nice chemistry with Miller.
Click here for the Official Scoresheet.