Bounces Go the Other Way as Admirals Fall to Providence
PROVIDENCE, RI – Perhaps it was karma’s way of balancing the Admirals’ fortunes. One night after a fortunate bounce for the Admirals led to the game-winning tally with five seconds remaining in Manchester, Norfolk (4-7-1-3) fell to the Providence Bruins (9-5-1-0) 4-3 after the Bruins capitalized on a strange bounce off the end boards in the third period on Sunday afternoon at the Dunkin’ Donuts Center.
The Bruins took a 1-0 lead late in the opening period. Former Admiral Martin St. Pierre sent a pass from the right circle toward the slot at the hashmarks where Vladimir Sobotka re-directed it past Norfolk goaltender Karri Ramo at 18:02.
Providence’s lead doubled early in the second period as the league’s sixth-rated power play struck 2:32 into the frame. Defenseman Johnny Boychuk sent a shot from the high slot that was deflected by Martins Karsums five-hole on Ramo.
However, Norfolk charged back just fourteen seconds later to trim their deficit to one goal. Jay Rosehill sent a shot from the left faceoff circle that Bruins netminder Kevin Regan shopped. However, the rebound went back into the slot and Bracken Kearns sent it into the twine behind Regan at 2:50.
The Admirals leveled the score at two goals apiece just over ten minutes later. Radek Smolenak made a backhand pass from behind the goal line in the left corner toward the net. Paul Szczechura accepted the pass and jabbed the puck over Regan’s right leg and just over the goal line at 13:42 for his team-leading eighth goal of the season.
Norfolk took the lead on a highlight-reel play early in the final frame. Steve Downie picked up the puck off a turnover in the Providence zone and sped down the left wing behind the goal line. It appeared as if he would circle behind the net. However, he stopped on a dime just before passing behind the net and spun around 180-degrees before spotting Juraj Simek, who was streaking down the slot near the right hashmarks. Downie threaded a pass from the left corner between a defender and Regan to Simek at the top of the crease near the netminder’s left leg for a tap-in goal at 4:45.
However, Providence’s potent power play answered back two minutes later. Sobotka centered a pass from behind the net to Boychuk in the right circle. Boychuk’s shot went between the post and left leg of a screened Ramo at 6:46.
The Bruins found themselves on the power play once again in the game’s final six minutes. After the puck was shot around the boards on the right wing, a Norfolk defenseman went behind the net to retrieve the puck. However, puck hit a seam in the boards in the right corner and caromed into the slot where Brad Marchand collected it and fired it past an unsuspecting Ramo at 14:07.
Despite pulling Ramo and getting several shots on Regan in the game’s final few minutes, the Admirals could not find the equalizer.
Karri Ramo (29 shots, 25 saves) was saddled with the loss. Kevin Regan (32 shots, 29 saves) collected the victory.
Norfolk was 0-4 on the power play. Providence was 3-7.
The Admirals and Worcester Sharks will meet on Wednesday night at the DCU Center as Norfolk’s seven-game road trip continues. The puck drops against the AHL affiliate of the San Jose Sharks at 7:05 p.m.
You may listen to all Admirals games live on ESPN Radio 1310 and sportsjuice.com. You may also view the contests online on a pay-per-view basis through AHL Live. For more information, please visit norfolkadmirals.com.
The Admirals will return to Scope with three games during the week of Thanksgiving: November 26 versus the Springfield Falcons, and November 28 and 29 versus the Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Penguins. There are plenty of exciting promotions planned for the week. Visit norfolkadmirals.com for more details.
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 (757) 671-8100 or visit Ticketmaster online at www.ticketmaster.com. Don’t miss a minute of the action by purchasing your 2008-09 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. Brad Marchand – PRO
2. Vladimir Sobotka – PRO
3. Paul Szczechura – NOR
Notes … The loss ended Norfolk’s point streak at five games (4-0-0-1) … After starting the season’s first seven games without out-shooting an opponent, Norfolk has now done so in six of the past eight games … The loss ended Ramo’s personal four-game unbeaten streak (3-0-1) … Scratches: F Pete Zingoni, D Matt Smaby, F Justin Keller and D Jamie Heward ... Attendance: 4,580.