Admirals Push by Aeros

Milwaukee, WI--The Milwaukee Admirals received an outstanding performance from goaltender Mark Dekanich, who recorded his second consecutive shutout against Houston en route to a 2-0 victory over the West Division rival Aeros Friday night at the Bradley Center.

Playing against each other in three of the last four Friday night, the two teams were feisty all night long in a game that featured five separate skirmashes and a combined 62 penalty minutes.

Both teams skated hard in the early going, trying to gain an edge. But it was the Admirals who struck first. Milwaukee broke out in numbers as Nick Spaling drove hard to the net through the right circle. Spaling faked a shot, then left the puck for Mike Santorelli in the slot, Santorelli couldn’t handle the pass and it slid through the slot to Andreas Thuresson who slung it into the net, past the outstretched stick of Houston goal tender Barry Brust at 8:51 of the first period.

The physical play elevated in the second period. A save by Brust was followed by a dog pile in front of the Houston net. Milwaukee’s Colin Wilson and Houston’s J.P. Testwuide emerged from the pile with their fists flying. The scrap cost each man five minutes in the box.

A minute later Milwaukee’s Ben Guite delivered the hit of the year on Houston’s Justin Falk. Guite blasted Falk off of his feet as the two converged at high speed behind the Houston net. Houston’s Max Noreau took exception to the hit and a scrap between Noreau and Guite ended with both players getting five minutes for fighting and an additional two minutes for roughing by Noreau.

Short tempers persisted throughout the contest as Houston’s Danny Irmen expressed his displeasure with the Admirals Mark Matheson. The fight was one of several on the night and it came on the second of two consecutive outstanding saves by Milwaukee netminder Mark Dekanich that kept Houston off the board late in the second period.

The Admirals entered the third period clinging tightly to a 1-0 lead. Cushion was provided by the recently reactivated Scott Ford, who recorded his first goal of the season on a rebound that caromed off the blocker of Barry Brust at 5:23. Hugh Jessiman created the opportunity with a hard shot from the left circle that Ford was able to handle off the rebound and bury in the net, beating Brust on his glove side. Ford’s goal gave the Ads a 2-0 lead.

Milwaukee’s two goals accounted for all of the scoring on a night that was punctuated by hard hits and short tempers. Dekanich frustrated the Aeros all night, recording the shutout while stopping all 25 shots that came his way en route to the victory.

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