Admirals king Checkers, punch playoff ticket
MILWAUKEE -- For the tenth straight year the Milwaukee Admirals are headed to the playoffs. They secured the fifth seed in the Western Conference with a 6-1 victory over the Charlotte Checkers on Sunday afternoon at the Bradley Center.
The Admirals will battle the Abbotsford Heat in the Western Conference Quarterfinals in a best-of-five series that will kick off next Friday, April 20th at 7:00 pm at the Bradley Center. Game two of the series is set for Sunday, April 22nd at 5 pm at the BC. The complete schedule for the series will be releases shortly.
After the Checkers Bobby Sanguinetti was called for slashing, the Admirals took advantage of their power-play. At the 14:37 mark of first Kyle Wilson fired a shot on Justin Peters from the faceoff circle, which Peters made the left pad save. The rebound bounced to Ryan Thang who was in the slot and beat Peters putting the Admirals ahead 1-0.
Milwaukee added to their lead with 13:25 left in the second. Brodie Dupont corralled the puck after a Checkers turnover in the neutral zone. Dupont had a break-a-way and beat Peters stick side putting the Ads up 2-0. Dupont’s goal wound up being the game winning goal.
The Checkers cut the Admirals lead at the 10:14 mark of the second period. After Teemu Laakso was called for interference, Charlotte went to work. Drayson Bowman found Jerome Samson in the face-off circle. Samson fired the one timer on Jeremy Smith and beat Smith cutting the Ads lead to one at 2-1.
At the 7:32 mark of the third Ryan Thang extended the Admirals lead to 3-1. Scott Valentine found Thang on the opposite blue like and Thang was by himself and fired a shot from the top of the faceoff circle beating Peters stick side. This was Thang’s second goal of the game.
The Admirals continued to take their lead in the third. With 7:44 left in the period Ryan Flynn fired a shot that bounced off a Checkers defenders skate and into the back of the net putting the Admirals ahead 4-1.
In a last chance effort to try to get back into the game the Checkers pulled there goalie with just over four minutes remaining in the game. Jani Lajunen made them pay as he scored an empty net goal at the 15:55 mark.
Milwaukee was not done with their scoring in the third. With a minute and a half left in the game Taylor Beck handled the puck on the side of the net. He than controlled the puck to the slot and beat Peters five-hole extending the Ads lead to 6-1.
Thang (2g) and Blum (2a) led the Admirals offense with two points apiece.
Tickets for the first two games of the Abbotsford series are on sale now. Fans can purchase individual tickets by calling Ticketmaster at (800) 745-3000 or logging on to milwaukeeadmirals.com, while fans looking for playoff packages, group tickets or more information should call the Admirals office at (414) 227-0550.