Admirals battle back, top Moose in OT
MILWAUKEE - Zach Sanford scored a pair of goals – including the game-winner in overtime – to cap a Milwaukee Admirals comeback in a 5-4 victory over the Manitoba Moose on Saturday night at UW-Milwaukee Panther Arena.
The win was the fourth in five games to start a season-long six-game homestand for the Admirals, who have just one regulation loss in their past seven games.
With the game tied at four and the team’s playing 3-on-3 Marc Del Gaizo carried the puck into the Moose zone and passed over to Luke Evangelista, who sent a saucer pass over to a streaking Sanford, who beat Manitoba goalie Oskari Salminen to the stick side and give the Admirals the win.
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In addition to Sanford, Kiefer Sherwood also scored a pair of goals on the night, including his team-best 20th of the season, while Evangelista, Phil Tomasino, and Roland McKeown all chipped in two assists to pace the offense.
The Moose got off to a quick start and built an early 2-0 lead beginning with a goal from Kirby Reichel just 1:27 into the contest. That was followed by a power-play tally by Manitoba’s Wyatt Bongiovanni at the 16:13 mark for a two-goal advantage.
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However, Sherwood’s goal late in the first gave the Admirals some of the momentum they needed. With the team on the power-play Phil Tomasino won a face-off and push the puck over to Sherwood, whose shot beat Manitoba goalie Oskari Salminen to stick side with just 43 seconds to play in the frame. The goal also triggered an avalanche of over 1,700 teddy bears on Jockey Being Family Teddy Bear Toss night.
Sanford leveled the score at two at the 4:06 mark of the second period on his eighth goal of the year. Stationed directly in front of the Manitoba net, Sanford deflected a Keaton Thompson shot past Salminen.
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Manitoba would get the next two goals as Reichel got his second of the night at 9:08 and Alex Limoges scored their second PPG of the game with just 27 seconds left in the sandwich frame.
Once again, the Admirals battled back to tie the score with goals from Jimmy Huntington and Sherwood just 50 seconds part to eventually force OT and set the stage for Sanford’s heroics.
The Admirals are off for the next five days for the AHL All-Star break. They get back in action when they finish up their six-game homestand next Friday, Feb. 10 at 7 p.m. against Rockford.