Admirals clinch playoff berth for 12th straight year

ROCKFORD, Ill. (WITI) -- Marek Mazanec stopped 26 shots and the Milwaukee Admirals clinched a Calder Cup Playoffs berth with a 4-1 win over the Rockford IceHogs Friday night in Rockford, IL.

The Admirals will play in the AHL postseason for the 12th straight season. The dates, times and opponent for the post-season will be determined at a later date.

Mazanec held the IceHogs to just one goal for the second straight game, earning his 16th win of the season.

Milwaukee got on the board first with a power play goal at 3:52 of the first period. Taylor Beck passed the puck from the right wing boards to the right corner for Miikka Salomaki. Salomaki stepped above the goal line and slid a pass to the opposite post where Filip Forsberg buried his 13th goal of the season, seventh on the power play.

Milwaukee grabbed a 2-0 lead with 1:19 remaining in the second period. Francis Wathier skated with the puck on the right win boards. As he moved behind the Rockford net he tapped a pass to Beck in the left circle. Beck shot the puck to the net and it deflected off Austin Watson who was charging down the slot. After a video review, the goal stood. It was Watson’s 18th goal of the season from Beck and Wathier.

The IceHogs cut the deficit in half at 9:44 of the third period. A turnover out of the Admirals right corner ended up on the slot and Teuvo Teravainen shot the puck into the net.

The Admirals reclaimed the two-goal cushion at 14:20 of the third period when Simon Moser forced a turnover and led a rush out of the Ads zone. Defenseman Scott Valentine jumped into the play on the right wing and received the pass at the red line. He skated into the right faceoff circle and fired a low shot inside the left post for his second goal of the season.

Colton Sissons scored his team-leading 26th with an empty-netter at 19:00 of the third period to seal the win.

The Admirals return home to battle the Chicago Wolves Saturday at 7 pm.