Special Teams, Goaltending Key In Admirals Victory
NORFOLK, Va. – Dustin Tokarski made 29 saves, Mark Parrish scored a power play goal and the Admirals’ penalty kill stopped all four Wilkes-Barre/Scranton power play opportunities as the Norfolk Admirals (38-34-3-3) shut out the Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Penguins (39-33-2-3) 1-0 on Wednesday night at Norfolk Scope Arena. The Admirals will host the Hershey Bears on Friday and Saturday nights at Scope in their final two games of the 2009-10 regular season.
The Admirals have pulled even with the idle Bridgeport Sound Tigers (36-31-4-6) in the race for the Eastern Conference’s final playoff spot. The Sound Tigers, however, have a game in hand. The Admirals also closed to within one point of the Penguins for third place in the East Division, although Wilkes-Barre/Scranton also has a game in hand.
The Admirals scored the game’s only goal 13:47 into the game. While on the power play, Ty Wishart sent a one-timer from the high slot through traffic that was deflected just wide of the net. The puck struck the end boards to the right of Penguins goaltender Brad Thiessen and caromed back towards the slot, where Mark Parrish chipped it over Thiessen’s right shoulder for his 17th goal of the season.
Superb defense, penalty killing and goaltending by Tokarski allowed that goal to stand up as the game-winner. Tokarski made 29 saves for his 26th win and fourth shutout of the season. He made 26 saves through the first two periods and was only called upon to stop three shots in the final frame.
The Norfolk penalty kill was also very strong – especially in that final frame. The Scope crowd breathed a collective sigh of relief with approximately seven minutes remaining when Chris Conner’s power play shot ricocheted off the right post, crossbar and the back of Tokarski’s mask before landing behind him in the crease. Vladimir Mihalik used his 6-foot-7 reach to his advantage in shoveling the puck under Tokarski for the whistle before the Penguins could pounce on it.
The penalty kill stopped all five Penguins chances tonight one game after stopping all five power play opportunities for the AHL’s #1 power play on Sunday at Hershey. Norfolk’s penalty kill has stopped 21 of its opponents last 22 chances.
Wilkes-Barre/Scranton’s Brad Thiessen (25 shots, 24 saves) took the loss.
Norfolk was 1-3 on the power play. Wilkes-Barre/Scranton was 0-5.
The Admirals will conclude their 2009-10 regular season by hosting the Hershey Bears on Friday and Saturday nights at Scope. Both games begin at 7:15 p.m.
The first 2,500 fans through the gates on Friday will receive an Admirals hat courtesy of Bank of the Commonwealth and WTKR NewsChannel3.
Friday is also LifeNet Health Foundation Fundraiser Night. Fans may purchase discounted fundraising tickets for the game on norfolkadmirals.com with a portion of the ticket cost going back to the LifeNet Health Foundation. These tickets must be purchased by 5:00 p.m. tomorrow.
Also on Friday the Admirals will hold WAAR (World Association of Adult Recreation) Kickball Night Out with the Admirals. Anyone wearing their WAAR tee shirts will receive $10 tickets to the game at the Scope Box Office and will be seated in the same section with other WAAR members. Intermission contests will also take place involving WAAR members.
The Admirals will close out the 2009-10 regular season schedule by thanking the most important members of the team – the fans – with Fan Appreciation Night. Come out for a fun night of hockey and you may leave with exciting prizes!
Also on Saturday, the first 1,500 fans through the gates will receive an Admirals mini stick courtesy of Uncle Bob’s Self Storage.
For complete details of all promotions, ticket offers and giveaways, please visit norfolkadmirals.com or call (757) 640-1212.
To purchase tickets to any Admirals game, you may visit the Scope Box Office weekdays from 10 a.m. to 5:30 p.m., visit any Ticketmaster outlet, call Ticketmaster at 1-800-745-3000 or visit Ticketmaster online at ticketmaster.com. Don’t miss a minute of the action by purchasing your 2010-11 season tickets today. Affordable monthly payment plans are available for a limited time only! Stop by the Admirals’ Administrative Offices at Scope, call (757) 640-1212 weekdays from 9:30 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. or visit norfolkadmirals.com anytime!
1. Dustin Tokarski – NOR
2. Mark Parrish – NOR
3. Brad Thiessen – WBS
NOTES … The Bridgeport Sound Tigers play Friday on the road at Lowell before returning home on Saturday to host the Manchester Monarchs. Bridgeport then closes out its regular season on Sunday afternoon at home against the Hartford Wolf Pack … The Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Penguins play Friday at home against the Albany River Rats, Saturday on the road against the Binghamton Senators and Sunday afternoon at home against the Senators … Tokarski started his 13th consecutive game, extending his own AHL Admirals franchise record … Tokarski moved past Michael Leighton (2001-02) for second place on the AHL Admirals single-season games played list with his 53rd appearance of the season … Tokarski has 26 wins on the season and now trails Leighton (2001-02) by just one win for the second-most wins in a single season in AHL Admirals history … Scratches: Kevin Quick, Dave Cowan, Blair Jones, Matt Case, Justin Keller, Richard Panik, Jaroslav Janus, Taylor Vichorek … Attendance: 3,023.