BINGHAMTON, N.Y. – Brandon Segal tallied three goals in succession before the midway point of the game to lead the Norfolk Admirals past the Binghamton Senators 6-1 on Friday night at the Broome County Veterans Memorial Coliseum.
The Admirals (32-38-4-5) took a 1-0 lead just under six minutes into the opening period. Justin Keller made a steal in the high slot of his own zone and sped through the neutral zone and into the attacking zone along the left wing. He sent a heavy wrist shot from the top of the left circle that went over the right shoulder of Senators (41-29-5-4) netminder Jeff Glass at 5:51 for Keller’s 17th goal of the season.
Norfolk used a power play to double their lead less than two minutes later. Blair Jones cut through the Binghamton defense from behind his own net to the Senators zone near the left faceoff circle. Jones then sent a backhand pass across the slot to Brandon Segal on the doorstep for a tap-in goal at 7:47.
Segal then put his team up 3-0 with his second goal of the night. Binghamton attempted a pass across the slot in their own zone that Segal picked off in the high slot. Segal sent a quick wrist shot between the legs of Glass at 12:25.
Segal completed the natural hat trick just 3:22 into the second period with a shorthanded goal. Segal stole the puck from a Senators defenseman at the right point of the Norfolk zone. He sped into the Binghamton third of the rink along the left wing and sent a backhand shot from the faceoff dot off the post near Glass’ right leg. The puck caromed into the crease and bounced backwards off Glass’ leg into the net for Segal’s 26th goal of the season.
John Swanson put the visitors up 5-0 just over two minutes later with his second professional goal. Pete Zingoni dropped a pass to Swanson in the high slot, and the rookie sent a wrist shot high over the outstretched glove of Glass at 5:23.
The Admirals took a 6-0 lead with Keller’s second goal of the game. He stole the puck in his own zone and sped up the ice two-on-one with Chris Lawrence. Keller faked a pass to Lawrence before sending a snap shot from the top of the left circle past new Binghamton netminder Mitch O’Keefe glove-side at 9:50.
The Senators got on the board with a shorthanded goal less than two minutes later. Josh Hennessy dropped a pass to Derek Smith at the left faceoff dot and Smith sent a shot past Admirals goaltender Craig Kowalski glove-side at 11:07. The goal finished scoring as neither team dented the twine in the final period.
Craig Kowalski (30 shots, 29 saves) earned the win. Jeff Glass (18 shots, 13 saves) took the loss in the first 25:23 of the game. Mitch O’Keefe (26 shots, 25 saves) did not receive a decision in the final 34:37 of the game.
Norfolk was 1-7 on the power play. Binghamton was 0-6.
The Admirals will play their final contest of the 2008-09 season tomorrow night in Wilkes-Barre/Scranton. The puck drops against the Penguins at 7:05 p.m. The game will be heard on 100.5 MAX-FM and sportsjuice.com and it may be seen on ahllive.com.
Don’t miss a minute of the action by purchasing your 2009-10 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. Brandon Segal – NOR
2. Justin Keller – NOR
3. Craig Kowalski – NOR
Notes … With the Norfolk win and an Albany loss to Wilkes-Barre/Scranton tonight, the Admirals will finish the season in sixth place in the American Hockey League’s East Division if they gain at least one point tomorrow against Wilkes-Barre/Scranton or if the River Rats lose to Binghamton in regulation, overtime or a shootout … Brandon Segal netted his first professional hat trick. It was the third hat trick of the season for Norfolk and just the second natural hat trick in AHL Admirals history … Two of Segal’s goals were unassisted giving him five unassisted tallies on the season. Only Philadelphia’s Jonathan Matsumoto (6) has more unassisted goals in the American Hockey League … Segal is now just one goal away from Brandon Bochenski’s team-leading total of 27 goals. Bochenski is currently on NHL recall with the Tampa Bay Lightning … With an assist tonight, Pete Zingoni has points in eight of his last 14 games (4G, 5A) … Defenseman Geoff Kinrade returned to the Admirals after making his NHL debut last night with the Tampa Bay Lightning … Scratches: F Bracken Kearns, F/D Wade Brookbank, F Jason Ward, F/D Brent Henley, F Grant Potulny and D Scott Jackson … F Steve Downie missed the game due to suspension … Attendance: 4,590.