Ritola, Jones each score twice in 5-3 victory
Tag Archives: Blair Jones
SECOND-PERIOD CHARGE LEADS ADMIRALS OVER CHECKERS
Road team has won all eight games in season series
CHARLOTTE, N.C. – Second-period goals from Blair Jones and Radko Gudas were the difference as the Norfolk Admirals came from behind to defeat the Charlotte Checkers, 4-2, at Time Warner Cable Arena on Sunday evening.
CHECKERS PREVAIL, 3-2, OVER ADMIRALS IN SHOOTOUT
Pogge wins sixth straight on the road; Charlotte now 3-0-0 in Norfolk
The old cliché states that, “When it rains it pours.” For the Hartford Wolf Pack, after being blown out for the fourth straight time and having lost their fourth-in-a-row for the third time this season, they must feel like they’re in the middle of Hurricane Katrina with little more than Wyle E. Coyote’s mini umbrella.
Ken Gernander has been with the Wolf Pack from their first day of existence. He’s been their captain as a player and then as an assistant under General Manager Jim Schoenfeld and now as head coach. After the game, a dejected Gernander told reporters, “This is the worst I’ve ever felt in decades.”
The Pack had just endured a 7-3 thrashing at the hands of the visiting Norfolk Admirals. The goal total added to their three previous losses saw the Pack outscored 27-12, the worst such span in the team’s history.
“They outshot us (45-24), our goaltending wasn’t good, we lost the one-on-one battles and we talked about the importance of a good start given that we had given up a goal on our first shift in the last two games and it was (11-2) shots when they scored their first goal.” Gernander said.
Hartford was just not in this one from the very start of the game. The Pack were outshot 9-1 in the first 7:33 of the game. Chad Johnson (17 saves, 14-10-2) had his third straight dreadful loss between the pipes for the Wolf Pack. The Calgary, Alberta native was pulled out of the game by Gernander for the second consecutive game. Johnson made a tremendous sprawling save on a wrap around attempt by Admirals’ captain Ryan Craig just 3:44 into the contest, to the Pack would have been down even sooner than they did.
At 11:57 Norfolk came up ice with a three-on-two odd man rush. Juraj Simek beat the Pack cage protector when his shot from the right circle was partially screened by defenseman Dave Urquhart and went over the glove into the short side corner of the net.
“The last three games have my worst games of the season by far,” Johnson told reporters. Since being reassigned by the parent New York Rangers, Johnson has allowed 14 goals on 60 shots in his last 97:39 of TOI. “No one is playing the way we know we can play, starting with me,” He said. “I’m not where I need to be. When other guys make mistakes, other guys need to step up and play strong, and that’s not happening right now.
2:15 later, with the Pack attempting to kill off a Corey Locke slashing penalty, Brandon Bochenski became the Admirals all time leading scorer when he broke into the Pack defensive zone getting around Dale Weise and then turned defenseman Corey Potter inside-out and broke in and beat Johnson high over the glove. Bochenski’s goal now ranks first in goals, power play goals and game-winning goals in AHL Admirals history.
The goal made the score 2-0.
The Pack got as close as they were going to get with 3:41 left in the first, Jared Nightingale took a shot that was blocked at the right point by Blair Jones. The puck came right back to Nightingale. He slid over to his left and fired it on rookie goaltender Jaroslav Janus (21 saves, 6-6-0). Brodie Dupont got position on Scott Jackson and used him as a screen and deflected the Nightingale shot into the net putting the Pack on the board.
The period ended 2-1 with the Pack being badly outshot 17-9 and had little traction despite the late goal.
The wheels came off the bus for the home team in the second period.
Just :53 seconds into the second period, Ryan McGinnis fired a left point shot to Johnson’s right. Craig got control of the puck and after getting away from Nightingale and fed ex-Ranger Adam Hall, who got by Dupont, and beat Johnson.
Nightingale was called for High Sticking at 11:09.
On the ensuing power play, former Providence Bruin, Matt Lashoff got by both Pack defenseman, first Illka Heikkinen on the right wing side, and then blew right past Kevin Schaeffer before sliding a puck under Johnson ending the Pack goaltenders’ night.
Miika Wiikman (21 saves) came into the contest at 12:07 and gave up the first of his three goals when a puck hit Nigel Williams’ skate off a shot by Jackson from the left wing circle.
On a break in the play 1:08 later, Weise chirped at referee Mark Lemelin one time too many and was sent to the box for Unsportsmanlike Conduct. The emotional outburst didn’t sit well with Gernander.
“We talk about discipline, shift length, changes and penalties, and we get a yapping penalty when we’re struggling to kill penalties as it is,” He said. “This is worse than I felt (after the Wolf Pack were outscored 25-6 during a four-game losing streak in early December) because it’s more consecutive of this (kind of play). It’s the worst stretch we’ve ever had.”
The Pack actually lost five-in-a-row once in the 2003-2004 season. But even over that awful stretch, the Pack were outscored 18-4.
In the third, Craig added a goal just 1:18 into the period. The puck was poked away from Dana Tyrell on the rush by Paul Crowder, but the puck eluded Williams and went right to Craig who beat Wiikman.
Crowder got his eleventh of the season at 12:45 out of the left wing corner and beat Janus off a forecheck turnover.
With 2:23 left to go, Ty Wishart took advantage of a screen and beat Wiikman with a shot and then with just 14.7 left Nightingale added a meaningless tally to get the teams to the final 7-3 score.
“It’s really frustrating and disappointing the way we are playing,” Johnson told the press after the game. “It’s kind of hard to explain, and I wish I knew because then it wouldn’t be going the way it’s going. I’m fighting the puck, and pucks are hitting me and taking bad bounces. It’s just not going the right way right now, and all you can do is focus on tomorrow and get better.
Johnson was emotional after the game. The Pack’s top netminder clearly cares about his game and the way he’s playing. After the game, Johnson sat in his uniform at his locker for almost half an hour. After taking time to answer questions with reporters, he went back on the ice and skated and fired shots at the boards.
“Things happen where you go in stretches like this,” Johnson said. “Everybody has them, even the best goalies in the world. They struggle sometimes, but it’s just matter of getting out of it by going back to doing the little things in practice and having good habits. Hopefully it will carry over in games, and we’ll start getting the results that we need to get. We just have to stick together and go back to basics.”
Bruce Berlet had the Abraham Zapruder-esque view on this one from the press box and put the story together his report at Hartfordwolfpack.com. PilotOnline.com and NorfolkAdmirals.com both have the story from the Norfolk P.O.V.
|5. Sound Tigers||57||25||23||3||6||59||139||157||1-0-0-0||3-3-1-3||1286|
|7. WOLF PACK||56||25||24||3||4||57||155||175||0-4-0-0||2-7-1-0||1126|
Scott Munroe stopped four of five Devils as the Sound Tigers beat Lowell 3-2 in a shootout in Bridgeport. At the Onondaga County War Memorial at Oncenter it was Texas over Syracuse 3-1. Ex-Pack Dave Liffiton with the only goal for the Crunch. Toronto knocked off Manitoba 4-3 at The Ricoh Coliseum. Meanwhile in Binghamton, ex-Pack netminder Chris Holt watched from the bench as starter Mike Brodeur surrender two goals in the second period as the Adirondack Phantoms got a win on the road over the Senators 4-3. Right Wing Chris Connor had a hat trick in goals and assists for a six point night as the Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Penguins completely dismantled the Albany River Rats 9-2. Ex Pack and ex-NY Ranger Ryan Hollweg along with ex-NY Rangers Assistant Coach Mike Pelino couldn’t overcome surrendering a three goal first period to future Hall-of-Famer, Chris Chelios the Chicago Wolves and lost 3-2 at the All State Arena in Chicago.
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* The Pack have surrendered twenty goals in the last three games and have been outscored 20-9. They were outscored 20-4 over a three game span earlier this season. They lost 7-1 at Manchester (December 4th), 4-1 at Wilkes-Barre/Scranton (December 5th) and then annihilated 9-2 (December 6th) at Hershey.
* In 26 home dates, the Wolf Pack have drawn 103,179 for an average of 3,968. Bridgeport has drawn 108,972 in 28 games at the Arena at Harbor Yard for an average of 3,892. Last season the Pack drew 167, 60 in 40 home dates for an average of 4,190 (18th overall). Bridgeport was was 16th with 181,114 and an average of 4,528. Hartford has been down every single year since they moved to the Connecticut capitol.
* After a night where they surrendered three goals on five shorthanded opportunities, the Wolf Pack are now dead last in the AHL at 78.8% in penalty killing. They led the league on the power play for the first couple of months of the season, but they have fallen to 15th out of the 29 teams in the American League at 17.6%.
Byers © – Locke – Weise
Grachev – Dupont – Roche
Soryal – Crowder – Couture
DiDiomete – Owens – Brashear
Urquhart – Potter
Williams – Nightingale
Heikkinen – Schaeffer
(Assistant Captains Bold and Italicized)
Matt Zaba – Healthy Scratch
Andrew Carroll – Healthy Scratch
Andres Ambϋhl – Reassigned to Swiss National Team – Two weeks
Steven Valiquette – Hand Injury – Day-to-Day (Technically on recall with the NY Rangers)
Ryan Garlock – Undisclosed – Day-to-Day
Bobby Sanguinetti – Lower Body – Day-to-Day
Michael Sauer – Undisclosed – Day-to-Day
Mathieu Dandenault – Lower Body – Indefinite
P.A. Parenteau – Concussion – Indefinite
Brent Henley – Knee – Season
Mike Hoffman – Shoulder – Season
1. NOR – B. Bochenski
2. NOR – R. Craig
3. NOR – M. Lashoff
ON ICE OFFICIALS:
Mark Lemelin (84)
Glen Cooke (6)
Paul Simeon (66)
The Wolf Pack are off Thursday night and then play three critical games in three nights, a home-and-home with Bridgeport separated by a home contest against first place Worcester. Bob Crawford is on the air with the pre-game show a half an hour before game time at 6:30 on Friday and Saturday and 2:30 on Sunday. Sunday’s game with Bridgeport at the Arena at Harbor Yard can also be heard on XM204.
To watch the game live, you can purchased it for $6.99 at AHL-live.
If you can attend the home games, they cost is as little as $10 a ticket, why not just go? For Ticket information call (860) 548-2000.
Too far away or can’t make it? Listen live at WTIC.com.
Norfolk Admirals 7 At Hartford Wolf Pack 3 – Status: Final
Feb 17, 2010 – XL Center Veterans Memorial Coliseum
Norfolk 2 3 2 – 7
Hartford 1 0 2 – 3
1st Period-1, Norfolk, Simek 16 (Jones, Tyrell), 11:57. 2, Norfolk, Bochenski 17 14:49 (pp). 3, Hartford, Dupont 11 (Nightingale, Roche), 16:19. Penalties-Crowder Hfd (holding), 9:36; Locke Hfd (slashing), 14:12.
2nd Period-4, Norfolk, Hall 10 (Craig, McGinnis), 0:53. 5, Norfolk, Lashoff 6 (Szczechura, Bochenski), 12:07 (pp). 6, Norfolk, Jackson 1 (Bochenski, Parrish), 17:52. Penalties-Fritz Nor (tripping), 2:52; served by Fadden Nor (bench minor – too many men), 4:53; Craig Nor (fighting), 9:01; Couture Hfd (fighting), 9:01; Nightingale Hfd (high-sticking), 11:09; Simek Nor (roughing), 17:39; Couture Hfd (roughing), 17:39; Weise Hfd (unsportsmanlike conduct), 19:00.
3rd Period-7, Norfolk, Craig 17 (Tyrell, Lashoff), 1:18. 8, Hartford, Crowder 11 12:45. 9, Norfolk, Wishart 8 (Szczechura, Lashoff), 17:37 (pp). 10, Hartford, Nightingale 2 (Owens, Brashear), 19:45. Penalties-McGinnis Nor (hooking), 4:09; Craig Nor (fighting), 14:49; DiDiomete Hfd (fighting), 14:49; Soryal Hfd (high-sticking), 16:30.
Shots on Goal-Norfolk 17-13-15-45. Hartford 9-6-9-24.
Power Play Opportunities-Norfolk 3 of 5; Hartford 0 of 3.
Goalies-Norfolk, Janus 6-6-0 (24 shots-21 saves). Hartford, Johnson 14-10-2 (21 shots-17 saves); Wiikman 2-4-0 (24 shots-21 saves).