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Milwaukee Admirals Update (Mar. 31)

by Staff Writer / Nashville Predators
ADMIRALS DO TEXAS TWO-STEP

Team Plays Only Houston, San Antonio Rest of the Year

OVERALL…The Admirals enter this week’s action with a 41-27-3-2 record and 87 points, good for third-place in the West Division. The Ads and lead fourth-place Houston and San Antonio by just one point, and Peoria, with 81 points, is still close behind in sixth. The Admirals will play four games again this week, including three games in three nights for the second consecutive weekend.

VS. SAN ANTONIO…The Admirals and San Antonio hit the ice three times this week as they finish up the season series. The two teams will square off on Wednesday and Friday in San Antonio before concluding the week on Sunday at 4:00 pm at the Bradley Center. Milwaukee is 3-2 against the Rampage so far this season with the Admirals winning 4-3 in a shootout on November 16th, picking up a 5-4 victory on November 27th in Texas, and winning 5-4 at the Bradley Center on January 23rd. San Antonio routed the Admirals 7-0 on November 24th at the AT&T Center and then earned a 5-3 win at the BC on December 27th. Since the Rampage joined the AHL in the 2002-03 season, the Admirals have posted a 31-14-2-4 mark with a 17-8-1-0 record at the BC and a 14-6-1-4 record in Texas.

VS. HOUSTON…The Admirals face-off with the Aeros this afternoon for the fourth meeting between the two clubs this season. The Admirals have won three of the first four contests, including last night’s 4-3 shoot-out win at the Bradley Center. In the first three meetings, the Ads topped the Aeros 3-1 at the Bradley Center Nov. 8th and won 3-2 in a shoot-out at the Toyota Center on November 25th, while Houston beat Milwaukee 4-1 on November 23rd in Texas. In 89 all-time meetings between Houston and Milwaukee the Admirals have a 50-30-2-7 mark. Former Admirals radio color analyst Troy Ward is now an assistant coach for the Aeros.

LAST WEEK…The Admirals won three of four games last week, falling 4-1 to Rockford on Monday before rebounding with a 3-2 shoot-out win Friday night in Grand Rapids, a 1-0 victory over Quad City Saturday night, and a 4-3 shoot-out win Sunday afternoon versus Houston. Against the IceHogs, the Ads dug themselves into a 3-0 hole before Antti Pihlstrom posted his team-leading 23rd goal of the season to make it 3-1. However, the ‘Hogs scored on an empty net at 17:42 of the third to snuff out any thoughts of an Admirals comeback. Friday night John Vigilante and Andreas Thuresson each scored first period-goals, while Jason Guerriero and Matt Ellison were successful on their shoot-out attempts as the Ads beat the Griffins for the sixth time this season. Dov Grumet-Morris recorded a team season-high 38 saves on the night to earn the win. On Saturday night Maxime Daigneault stopped all 35 shots thrown his way in his first action with the Admirals since February 16th and Ellison scored the game’s lone goal to lead the Ads to victory. Then Sunday afternoon Guerriero scored twice in the shoot-out, while Ellison bagged the deciding tally in the seventh round as the Ads topped Houston in a shoot-out for the second time this season.

THE BIG 4-0…Saturday night’s win was the Admirals 40th of the season. This is the 17th time in franchise history that the team has topped the 40-win plateau and it is also the fifth consecutive year that the Ads have done so. The Admirals are just one season shy of tying the AHL record for most consecutive 40-wins seasons, set by the Cleveland Barons, who won 40 or more in six straight campaigns from 1947-48 through 1952-53. The Hartford Wolfpack also have a five-year 40-win streak that runs concurrent with the Ads’ run. Only twice prior in Admirals history has the team won 40 or more games for at least three consecutive seasons. The team record for wins in one season is 54, set in the 1988-89 season when the Admirals posted a 54-23-0-5 mark.

MR. 500…Admirals captain and defenseman Alex Henry played in his 500th professional game in North America in Sunday’s 4-3 shoot-out win over Houston. The Elliot Lake, ON native has skated in 175 NHL contests with the Edmonton Oilers, Washington Capitals, and Minnesota Wild, recording a pair of goals and nine assists and he also served as the captain of the Wild in October of 2005. He has played in 325 AHL games for the Admirals, Hamilton Bulldogs, Portland Pirates, posting 11 goals and 33 assists. In two plus seasons in Milwaukee, Henry has 21 points (4g-17a) and 189 penalty minutes in 137 games.

THE LOWEST SCORE…Saturday night’s win in Quad City was the 28th time in Admirals history that the team has played a game where just one goal has been scored. The Ads’ record in those games is 11-15-0-2, with a 3-6 record in their last nine. It also marked the fifth time this year where the final score was 1-0, with the Admirals winning twice and finishing on the short side on three of those occasions. Milwaukee’s only other 1-0 win this year was an overtime victory against Chicago on October 27th at the Bradley Center.

ALL DONE BUT TEXAS…In what can only be described as a scheduling quirk, the Admirals will play just the Houston Aeros and the San Antonio Rampage for their final eight games this season. Three of those contests will be against the Rampage, while five will come versus Houston, including three straight in the season’s final three days. So far this year the Ads are 3-1 against the Aeros, including two shoot-out wins, and 3-2 versus San Antonio.

WORKING OVERTIME…The Admirals shoot-out wins Friday and Sunday were the first time the team has gone into overtime in the month of March and it was their first shoot-out since February 19th against Quad City. The Admirals have needed extra time to decide a game just 13 times this year, posting a 3-3 mark when the game ends in overtime and a 5-2 record when a shoot-out is required to determine the winner. Last season the Admirals set an AHL record by playing 29 overtime/shoot-out contests. Coincidentally, in five of the team’s seven shoot-out games this year, the final score has been 3-2.

PLAYOFF PUSH…The 2007-08 season comes to an end in less than two weeks and the Admirals are currently embroiled in a race to make the post-season. The Ads are in third-place in the West with 87 points, just one point ahead of fourth place San Antonio and Houston. The top four teams in the division make the playoffs, and the fifth place squad in the West will qualify if they have more points than the fourth place team in the North Division. Hamilton is in fourth place in the North with 73 points, while Peoria looms just six points behind the Admirals in sixth place in the West Division.

OVER THE AIR AND ON THE WEB…The Admirals have a new home for their radio broadcasts this season on Sports Radio 1250 WSSP with Aaron Sims calling all of the hard-hitting, end-to-end action. In addition, the team has a one-hour hockey magazine dubbed “Milwaukee Admirals Center Ice” that airs every Monday from 6-7 pm on WSSP. Fans can watch all Admirals games, home and on the road, live on the internet via B2 Networks. Simply go the Admirals website at milwaukeeadmirals.com and click on the B2 logo.

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