Ads Suffer First Home Regulation Loss
Milwaukee, WI—The Milwaukee Admirals dug themselves a three-goal deficit and couldn’t get over the hump as they lost the Grand Rapids Griffins 5-3 on Saturday night at the Bradley Center. The loss was the first in regulation this season for the Ads, and also the first regulation loss for new Admirals head coach Kirk Muller.
Grand Rapids picked up their first goal of the game at 14:51 of the first on a power-play goal by Jamie Johnson, who batted a cross ice pass out of mid-air and past Ads netminder Atte Engren. The Griffins made it 2-0 with just 1:43 to play in the opening stanza on Willie Coetzee's third tally of the season, with assists from Chris Connor and Johnson.
After just killing off the first penalty in a five-on-three power-play early in the second period, Admirals forward Ryan Thang got free on a breakaway, but his try was thwarted by MacDonald. Grand Rapids winger Mitch Callahan corralled the puck and fired a pass to Connor, who skated just inside the Milwaukee blueliner and fired a wrister that clanged off the crossbar and in for a 3-0 lead at 4:54 of the second.
The Ads finally cracked the score column when Juuso Puustinen posted his second goal in as many nights and his fourth of the season at 15:29 of the second. Kyle Wilson fired a shot from the right boards that was stopped, but the puck squirted out to Puustinen, who was there to flip it over the Grand Rapids netminder.
Grand Rapids got that back at 3:59 of the third when Tomas Tatar’s shot from close range snuck under the arm of Engren.
Just over two minutes later Milwaukee responded with a pair of goals just nine seconds apart. The first came when Ryan Ellis blasted a slapshot from the left circle, his first regular season professional goal, at 6:10. Before the fans sat back down, Taylor Beck broke loose into the Grand Rapids zone and pulled the Ads to within one with his third of the season at 6:19.
The momentum that was on the Ads side at that point was lost at 12:12 of the third when Gustav Nyquist got behind the Milwaukee defense and scored on a breakaway to pump the Griffins lead back to two.
The Admirals pulled Engren in favor of an extra attacker with 2:02 to play, but despite some good chances couldn’t find another tally.
The Ads complete their first three-in-three of the season tomorrow afternoon by hosting Texas at the Bradley Center at 3:00 pm. Fans can order tickets by calling Ticketmaster at (800)745-300 or by logging on to the Admirals website at www.milwaukeeadmirals.com. Don’t forget to follow the Admirals on Twitter (@mkeadmirals) and on Facebook!