NORFOLK (3) AT ALBANY RIVER RATS (4), SO
Nathan Barrett scored two power play goals and Martin St. Pierre had three assists, but the River Rats converted on all three shootout attempts to defeat the Admirals in a shootout on Wednesday night in Albany. Box Score>>
Neither team found the back of the net in the opening twenty minutes despite multiple power plays for both teams. Norfolk's Mike McKenna stopped nine shots while Albany's Frank Doyle made 11 saves as the teams headed to the locker room scoreless after one period.
The River Rats took the lead midway through the second stanza on the power play. Norfolk defenseman Michal Barinka broke his stick while penalty killing. Peter Vrana took advantage of the extra room, skating into the high slot and sending a wrister that beat McKenna at 8:05. Two late-period man-advantage goals gave the Admirals the lead.
With just over four minutes to play in the period, James Wisniewski sent a blue-line blast toward the net. Nathan Barrett deflected the shot beneath Doyle's pads for a power play tally at 16:50.
Norfolk took the lead with just 25 seconds remaining in the frame. Martin St. Pierre took the puck behind the Albany cage to set up the play. He peeked around the left side of Doyle and sent a cross-crease pass to Mark Cullen at the right side of the slot. Cullen buried a one-timer five-hole at 19:35. The Admirals held a 16-15 edge in shots in the stanza and took a 2-1 lead into the third period.
The River Rats tied the game at two goals apiece 6:28 into the third as Ahren Nittel beat McKenna stick side on the power play. The Admirals reclaimed the lead on a five-on-three power play seven minutes later. St. Pierre sent a wrist shot from the circle to the left of Doyle that Barrett deflected into the back of the net for his second goal of the contest at 13:17.
However, Albany tied the game with a short-handed goal just under a minute later. Tuomas Pihlman sent a shot from just over the blue line that glanced off McKenna's shoulder and high into the air before landing on edge behind him and rolling into the back of the net at 14:13. The Admirals once again fired 16 shots on Doyle in the period, but Barrett's goal was the only one that got past him as the game would require overtime.
Norfolk had several good chances to win the game in overtime, including a power play. But Doyle stifled those chances, making seven saves in the extra frame. In the shootout, Nicklas Bergfors, Chris Minard and David Clarkson converted their opportunities and Doyle stopped all three Admirals shots to give Albany the victory.
Mike McKenna stopped 36 of 39 shots, but picked up the shootout loss. Frank Doyle earned the victory making 47 saves on 50 Admirals' shots.
The Admirals were 3-12 on the power play. Albany was 2-6.
The Admirals next take the ice on Friday night at 7:05 against the Providence Bruins. Catch all the action with host Pete Michaud on the radio at 670-AM WPMH and 1270-AM WTJZ. Games are also cybercast via Sportsjuice and the B2 networks. Click the Sportsjuice link on www.norfolkadmirals.com or go to www.sportsjuice.com to hear the audio broadcast. You can also view the game on a pay-per-view basis through the B2 networks by clicking on the B2 banner at www.norfolkadmirals.com.
1. Frank Doyle - ALB
2. Nathan Barrett - NOR
3. Tuomas Pihlman - ALB