SYRACUSE, N.Y. – Kyle Palmieri and Sami Vatanen netted goals, but the Norfolk Admirals (13-14-1-0) fell to the Syracuse Crunch (19-7-1-3), 4-2, on Friday night from the Onondaga County War Memorial at Oncenter. The game was the first of eight meetings between the clubs in 2012-13.
Norfolk suffered just its third regulation loss in December, falling to 6-3-1-0 in the month. Admirals goaltender Igor Bobkov (6-8-0) stopped 28 of 32 shots. Syracuse netted three power play goals in the contest.
Norfolk plays the second game of its three-game road trip tomorrow night against the Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Penguins.
Syracuse took a 2-0 lead after one period on a pair of power play one-timers. Mark Barberio scored on a shot from the right point at 9:42. Alex Killorn then scored on a shot from the slot at 12:12.
Norfolk cut its deficit to one goal 7:19 into the second stanza. Palmieri picked off a pass in the neutral zone and skated in alone on Crunch goaltender Dustin Tokarski. He sent a backhand shot over Tokarski’s right leg for his tenth goal of the season, cutting Syracuse’s lead to 2-1.
Syracuse restored its two-goal lead exactly five minutes into the final frame as Ondrej Palat scored on a rebound to give the home team a 3-1 lead.
Vatanen’s fourth goal of the season came at 10:54 of the third period. Patrick Maroon sent a pass through two sets of legs to the rookie defenseman, who scored to cut the Crunch lead to 3-2.
However, Brett Connolly netted the third Syracuse power play goal of the contest at 16:15 for the 4-2 final score.
Tokarski (12-5-3) stopped 16 of 18 shots in the win.
Norfolk was 0-for-2 on the power play. Syracuse was 3-for-4.
The Admirals and Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Penguins face off at 7:05 p.m. tomorrow night from the Mohegan Sun Arena in Wilkes-Barre Township, Pennsylvania. Tune in to 102.1-FM, 1490-AM, 1021TheGame.com or AHLLive.com.
After completing their three-game road trip, the Admirals return to Norfolk Scope Arena next Friday and Saturday nights to host the Syracuse Crunch. The first 2,012 fans through the gates next Friday will receive an Admirals Calder Cup replica trophy, courtesy of John's Tax Service, JPM Financial Services and WTKR NewsChannel3.
Don’t miss a minute of Admirals action by purchasing your season tickets today. 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. Tyler Johnson – SYR
2. Ondrej Palat – SYR
3. Kyle Palmieri – NOR
NOTES … This game marked the first time the Admirals faced Syracuse with the Crunch as the top affiliate of the NHL’s Tampa Bay Lightning. Norfolk and Tampa Bay were affiliated from the 2007-08 – 2011-12 seasons … Fourteen of Syracuse’s 20 players in the lineup in tonight’s game played for the Admirals in 2011-12 … This was also the first time the Crunch faced Norfolk with the Admirals as the top affiliate of the NHL’s Anaheim Ducks. Syracuse and Anaheim were affiliated from 2010-11 – 2011-12 … Thirteen of Norfolk’s 20 players in the lineup in tonight’s game played for the Crunch in 2011-12 … Did not play: Ryan Lasch, Luca Caputi, John Mitchell, Matt Smaby, Nick Schaus, Frederik Andersen.