Milwaukee Admirals fall to Stars in Texas

Riley Barber scored a pair of goals to lead the Texas Stars to a 5-3 win over the Milwaukee Admirals Friday at HEB Center.

The win moved Texas three points ahead of the Admirals for the lead in the Central Division (70-67).

The game featured a goalie fight between Milwaukee’s Jaroslav Askarov and Texas’ Remi Poirier with 4:34 remaining in the game. The two decided to fight after a pileup of players occurred at the red line in front of the penalty boxes.

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The teams combined for five misconducts in the game and a total of 20 penalties for 92 minutes. Milwaukee was assessed 10 penalties for 50 minutes. The 50 minutes was Milwaukee’s season-high.

Texas lead 2-0 after the first period. Antonio Stranges scored the first goal at 5:40 of the frame when he one-timed a shot from the right circle into the net. Mavrik Bourque’s wrist shot from the left face-off dot went into the cage at 11:57 of the period.

Milwaukee got on the board early in the second period when recently-acquired Isaac Ratcliffe backhanded a rebound off the left pads of Stars goalie Remi Poirier into the net at 1:07. It was Ratcliffe’s first as an Admiral and his third in the American Hockey League this season.

The Stars, however, responded on the next shift. Riley Barber’s shot from the left circle went inside the right post and into the goal at 1:19 to give Texas a two-goal cushion again.

Texas defenseman Alex Petrovic scored off a rebound at 8:50 of the second period to give the home team a 4-1 advantage.

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Barber scored his second of the game with a quick shot after a face-off win in the left circle. The shot popped off Askarov’s glove into the net at 14:38 of the third period.

It was :48 later when the fracas occurred. The Admirals replaced Askarov with Devin Cooley and Texas sent Adam Scheel in goal after Poirier was ejected.

Milwaukee scored two more goals. The first was a power play goal deflected into the net by Cole Schneider at 15:52. It was his 20th goal of the season, seventh on the power play and the 78th in his Admirals career. Schneider ranks third on the Admirals AHL list in goals behind only Darren Haydar and Chris Mueller. Jordan Gross and Egor Afanasyev picked up the assists.

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Austin Rueschhoff scored his first as an Admiral at 17:51 of the third period to bring the Admirals within two. He put in a rebound of a Roland McKeown shot. After the goal, Milwaukee was awarded a power play and pulled Cooley for the extra attacker, but Milwaukee was unable to score another.

Askarov finished with 28 saves. Cooley stopped each of the three shots he saw. Poirier turned aside 32 of 33 Admirals shots for the win. Scheel stopped 9 of 11.

Milwaukee and Texas meet in the final game of the season series Saturday, March 4 in Cedar Park, Texas.

The Admirals return home Tuesday, March 7 to face the Iowa Wild.