Milwaukee, WI—The Admirals picked up goals from five different players as they staved off elimination in a 5-3 win over the Manitoba Moose in game four of the Central Division Semifinals on Friday night at Panther Arena.
The win sets up a decisive game five on Saturday night at 6 pm at Panther Arena. It’s the second straight season that the Ads and Moose will need a fifth game to determine a series winner. Last year Milwaukee took a 2-1 game five win up in Winnipeg.
Kiefer Sherwood paced the Admirals offense with a goal and an assist, while Zach Sanford, Adam Wilsby, Joakim Kemell, and Austin Rueschhoff all lit the lamp for Milwaukee. Yaroslav Askarov stopped 16 shots to pick up the win in net.
For the third straight game the Moose got the first goal of the game, as Greg Meireles scored on an odd-man rush while on the power-play 5:02 into the game.
A power-play goal of their own tied the score at one for the Ads at 8:13 of the opening frame. With the man-advantage winding down, Phil Tomasino sent a pretty touch pass to Sanford and he sent a backhand under the arm of Manitoba goalie Oskari Salminen.
The Ads took their first lead since game two on one of the rarest goals in hockey. Rueshhoff was called for a slash, but since the Moose possessed the puck Salminen came off in favor of an extra attacker. From there Declan Chisholm attempted a pass back out to the point, but the puck missed the intended target and slid slowly down the ice hitting the right post before going into the Moose net.
Since Wilsby was the last Admiral to touch the puck he was given credit for the goal, which came with 1:15 left in the first.
The Ads extended their lead to 4-1 with a pair of second period tallies. The first came at 2:15 of the sandwich frame on a power-play tally from Kemell and that was followed by Sherwood’s second of the playoffs when he skated in on a breakaway, went forehand to backhand and lifted the puck into an open net.
Manitoba made things interesting in the third period as Jansen Harkins and Wyatt Bongiovanni lit the lamp within the first five minutes.
However, Askarov and the Ads defense held firm from there and they iced the game when Rueschhoff scored on an empty net with 19 seconds to go in the game.