MANCHESTER, NH – Goaltender Jonathan Boutin stopped 41 shots and 6-of-7 shootout attempts to lead the Norfolk Admirals to a 3-2 shootout victory over the Manchester Monarchs on Friday night at the Verizon Wireless Arena in front of 5,890 fans.
Manchester (24-24-4-4) is in fifth place in the Atlantic Division with 56 points. Norfolk (20-30-2-4) is in seventh place in the Eastern Division with 46 points.
Three periods and overtime were not enough to decide this one as the contest went to a shootout. Right wing Junior Lessard beat Monarchs netminder Daniel Taylor glove side on the deciding shootout tally. Lessard missed on his first attempt in the shootout but was able to make up for it in the second round giving the Admirals a shootout win.
A quickly developing play allowed Monarchs defenseman Richard Petiot to find the back of the net first. The Monarchs held the puck in the zone when center Marc-Andre Cliche skated behind the net and to the right of Boutin. Cliche found Petiot camping in the left circle for the one-timer that made it to the stitches. Center Brady Murray managed his fifth assist of the year.
Admirals leading scorer right wing Kyle Wanvig was able to bring the contest to a 1-1 tie on the Admirals first power play of the night. At 10:04 in the first period, Norfolk's defenseman Jay Leach marched down the ice and ripped a shot from the left face-off circle and right at the chest of Taylor. Wanvig was in the right place at the right time as he nicked the puck over Taylor's glove and into the basket. The lamplighter was Wanvig's 18th of the year with the second assist going to defenseman David Schneider.
Keeping their theme of power play goals, the Admirals netted another goal on the man advantage. Fresh off a Monarchs shorthanded scoring chance, left wing Karl Stewart slipped into the Monarchs zone. Stewart fired a shot from the slot that beat Taylor five-hole at 7:08 in the second period. Leach earned his second assist on the night while forward Adam Henrich tallied the other assist.
Not to be outdone, the Monarchs scored the equalizer at 5:09 in the third frame. A cannonade of shots was put on Boutin from all angles. Right wing Lauri Tukonen and Murray both put the puck on net but were not successful. The rebound bounced to Cliche who was ready to slam it home and he did. Tukonen and Murray picked up assists on the second goal of the night for the Monarchs.
Taylor burdened the loss deflecting 26-of-28 shots on net and 5-of-7 during the shootout. Boutin earned the win stopping 41-of-43 shots on net and 6-of-7 in the shootout.
Manchester went 0-for-4 on the power play. Norfolk was 2-for-5 with the man advantage.