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The week that was in Bridgeport

by Jamie Palatini / New York Islanders
THE WEEK THAT WAS… The Sound Tigers made their only trip down the Delmarva Peninsula to Norfolk, Va. this past weekend to face the Norfolk Admirals in a two-game series. Physical play was the predominant theme in both games, but the Sound Tigers were unable to come away with a win as Norfolk took both games by scores of 5-2 and 3-2.

NORFOLK 5, SOUND TIGERS 2… The Sound Tigers opened up a two-game series at Scope Arena against the Norfolk Admirals looking to snap a five-game winless streak to start the 2011 calendar year. Blair Jones opened the scoring for the Admirals at 3:03 of the first period, but Brett Motherwell would even the score with his second goal of the year with 4:15 remaining in the opening frame. Norfolk would retake the lead on a power play goal from Paul Szczechura 6:41 into the second, however that was short-lived as Micheal Haley notched his team-leading 11th goal of the year on the power play to tie the score 2-2 midway through the period. But Mike Angelidis would notch a power play goal for Norfolk with just under three minutes left in the second period, Paul Szczechura notched his second power play goal of the night at 14:05 of the third and Tim Marks added an insurance goal late as Norfolk came away with a 5-2 win.

NORFOLK 3, SOUND TIGERS 2… Joel Martin had his first start in net as a Sound Tiger on Saturday night against Norfolk as the Fort Worth, Texas native looked snap the Sound Tigers losing streak. Martin made 15 saves in the opening period, and Robin Figren’s power play goal 6:32 into the first period gave the Sound Tigers a 1-0 lead after 20 minutes. The Admirals continued to pepper Martin with shots and broke through 1:21 into the second as Mike Angelidis’ tally knotted the score at one. Brett Motherwell’s second goal of the weekend came on the power play with just seven minutes left in the middle frame, but Chris Durno’s deflection at 15:20 tied the game once more heading to the final period. Martin continued to make big saves through the third period, but Durno would spoil Martin’s fantastic effort. The Admirals captain capitalized on a Sound Tigers neutral ice turnover, skated in on a partial breakaway and slid the puck past Martin with 1:09 left in regulation as Norfolk went on to win 3-2. Joel Martin earned the tough-luck loss for the Sound Tigers, making a season-high 48 saves in his first start with the team.

PLAYER OF THE WEEK… BRETT MOTHERWELL – Sound Tigers defenseman Brett Motherwell earns player of the week honors for his two-goal effort this weekend in Norfolk. Motherwell scored the first goal of Friday night’s 5-2 loss to Norfolk while falling to the ice, and netted his second goal of the weekend and third of the season after batting home the rebound off of Mark Katic’s shot on the power play in the Sound Tigers 3-2 loss to the Admirals on Saturday.

. The American Hockey League has announced that rookie forward Rhett Rakhshani has been selected to represent the Bridgeport Sound Tigers at the 2011 AHL All-Star Classic presented by Capital BlueCross on Jan. 30-31 in Hershey, Pa. Rakhshani, 22, earns All-Star honors following an impressive first-half to the 2010-11 season in which the first-year pro amassed 32 points (10 goals, 22 assists), a total which currently leads all AHL rookies. The Huntington Beach, Calif. native currently leads all Sound Tigers in both assists and total points. Rakhshani will join Sound Tigers captain Mark Wotton as Sound Tigers representatives on the Eastern Conference All-Star Roster. Wotton was named playing captain of the Eastern Conference on Dec. 10, marking his second All-Star appearance. This is the first time the Sound Tigers will have multiple All-Stars since the 2008-09 season when Andrew MacDonald and Mike Iggulden represented the Sound Tigers for the Canadian AHL All-Stars.
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