Admiral center Blake Geoffrion has again been named the Reebok/AHL Player of the Week,making it two weeks in a row having the honor. It marks the first time in more than 16 years a player has had the award back to back weeks. In two games, he recorded two goals, five assists and a plus-5 rating, keeping Milwaukee tied atop the West Division with the best record in the Western Conference with 64 points.
The Admirals hosted the University of Wisconsin Marching Band and the RockfordI cehogs on Friday night, taking a 4-2 win. The Admirals finally got on the board at 6:09 by defensemen Brett Palin in the second period for his first goal of the season and as an Admiral. Ryan Thang and Geoffrion added two more for Milwaukee. Palin ended up scoring on an empty net at 19:11. Mark Dekanich turned aside 26 shots for his 19th win of the season.
Milwaukee gained their fourth straight win, defeating Grand Rapids 6-2 Saturday night. The Admirals got on the board forst with a Mark Santorelli power play goal at 1:39 of the first period. Linus Klasen at 6:35 and again at 5:58 of the second period got his 22nd point. Gabriel Bourque scored 2 goals,one a 4-on-4 in the second period. Geoffrion made it 6-1 at 6:16 of the third period. Jeremy Smith stopped 25 shots for the win.
Milwaukee will take on Peoria on Wednesday and Chicago Friday.
The Rampage were able to beat the Lake Erie Monsters 4-3 on Friday night. They Rampage with four seconds remaining on their first power-play opportunity of the night scored first at 13:43 into the first period by Brett MacLean, his 19th goal. Right wing J.D. Watt recorded his first goal in a Rampage uniform at 2:26 into the second period. Soon falling apart, after allowing three goals in 28 minutes, head coach Edwards substituted goaltender Matt Climie in place of Al Montoya. Bracken Kearns netted the tying goal at 12:14 in the third period. Just 53 seconds later, a power-play goal by Alex Picard put the Rampage ahead. Montoya and Climie combined for 18 saves in the win.
Rampage took a 5-4 shootout win over the Lake Erie Monsters on Saturday .They are tied with Milwaukee in the West Division, sitting at 64 points. Right wing Brett MacLean did get an assist in the game, giving him his 79th assist with the Rampage and sole possession of the franchise lead. This season MacLean has also broken the record for most games played, goals, points and power-play goals in a Rampage uniform. Garrett Stafford opened the scoring with a power-play goal at 4:26 in the first, followed by Alex Picard at 7:22. Ned Lukacevic also scored with a power-play goal at 16:57 in the seond. Matt Pope at the 6:36 in the third was the last regulation goal for San Antonio. Garrett Stafford was the lone Rampage scorer in the shootout. Al Montoya started the third period, replacing Climie, sharing again 30 saves.
San Antonio will see Oklahoma City on Wednesday for a day game, and then Manitoba on Friday and Saturday.
Chicago Wolves (ATL)
The Wolves took a loss from the Abbotsford Heat in a 4-3 shootout Friday night. Andrew Kozek gave Chicago the first point in the game at 16:45 in the first period. Darren Haydar scored two goals in the third period to tie the game for Chicago, eventually leading the game to overtime and the shootout. Nigel Dawes was the only player to get the puck in the net during the shootout. Peter Mannino made 28 total saves in regulation and overtime.
Chicago brought home a 4-2 victory over the Peoria Rivermen before 10,528 fans Saturday night. Tender Drew MacIntyre stopped 24 of 26 shots he faced. Mike Davies put the Wolves on top early with his eighth goal of the season at 3:59 into the first. At 5:41 in the second period, defenseman Andrey Zubarev scored his first AHL goal and put the Wolves ahead. The Wolves went up 3-1, 3:30 into the third period when Andre Deveaux was able to slap one in. Dawes also scored in the game, at 5:06 of the third period.
The Wolves will face Grand Rapids on Wednesday and Milwaukee of Friday.
Oklahoma City forward Teemu Hartikainen was named the AHL Rookie of the Month for the week, earning the honor for registering 14 points and was a +8 in the Barons 15 games during the month of January, moving him to third in goals (14) and points (32) in scoring among AHL rookies. Hartikainen joins the list of Barons players who have earned honors so far this season, joining Linus Omark, Bryan Helmer, and Alex Giroux.
The Barons home troubles have not ended yet, losing to the Rivermen 4-1 on Thursday. Even with 36 shot attempts, OKC’s only goal was a fluke bouncer from Brad Moran at 14:32 in the first period. Jeff Deslauriers made 36 stops in the loss.
The Barons were able to turn it around for Friday’s re-match, taking a 2-1 shootout win over Peoria. The Barons offense was again on fire, putting up 37 shots. On a 5-on-3 power play, Alexandre Giroux scored with a one-time, tying the game at 2:21 in the second period. After having only one shot on goal in overtime, Chris VandeVelde was the scorer out 10 shooters in the shootout, winning the contest for the Barons. Goaltender Martin Gerber made 28 saves in his return to the ice.
Oklahoma City traveled south to take on the Texas Stars, once again taking a loss, 3-0 on Saturday. Texas has won the last six of the seven games this season between the two teams, The loss has brought Oklahoma City to 27-19-2-5 record and fifth place in the division with 61 points. Martin Gerber made 29 saves in taking the loss.
The Barons game on Wednesday against San Antonio will be a day game, with another snowstorm hitting town the same day. A potential new low attendence record could be in the making. It will the only game of the week for Oklahoma City.
The Rivermen took a 4-1 win over the Oklahoma City Barons on Thursday for their first of four on the road. The game had a total of 13 power plays, one lone goal was scored. On a five-on-three advantage, Derek Nesbitt scored his 15th of the season at 12:35 in the fist period, drawing first blood on the Barons. The goal was his ninth power-play goal, a team high. The Rivermen completely dominated and took over once in the third, TJ Hensick netting two goals just 2:48 apart. The goals added up for his 13th of the year and third point of the night. Nicholas Drazenovic put up his 12th of the year into the empty net at the end to put the final dagger into the Barons. Ben Bishop made 35 saves in the win.
Peoria’s luck was reversed in the rematch Friday night, losing 2-1 in a shootout game.Tender Jake Allen made 34 saves in regulation and stopped the nine shooters in the shootout. The Rivermen again opened the scoring in the first period with a 5-on-3 goal for the second night with a TJ Hensick empty net goal at 8:41.
The Rivermen took their first trip to Chicago this season, and then falling to the Wolves 4-2 Saturday, Chicago’s second win against the Rivermen this season. Peoria finally got on the board at 10:12 of the firstperiod on a goal by Dave Spina,his eighth goal of the season. Playing his former team, Nathan Oystrick scored another for the Rivermen at 12:30 of the third period. Allen stopped 30 of 34 shots in the loss. Peoria now drops to third in the division standings, two points out of first.
Peoria will on Wednesday see Milwaukee and Friday, Houston.
The Icehogs took on the Milwaukee Admirals and suffered a 4-2 loss on Friday night. The loss marked the sixth straight game loss and matched a season-low with just four shots on goal in the first period. Wade Brookbank put Rockford on the board at 3:09 in the second period. Jeff Taffe, with his team-leading 14th, scored Rockford’s other goal at 12:35 of the third. Hannu Toivonen went home with the loss after turning away 20 shots.
Rockford got their win Saturday night against the Abbotsford Heat by way of 3-2 in front of 5,389 at the Rockford MetroCentre.Getting down 2-0 after the first period, the IceHogs finally woke up starting with a goal by Kyle Hagel at 1:51 in the second period. Ryan Potulny at 1:34 in the third brought the Hogs closer to ending their losing streak. The IceHogs were able to convert on a 5-on-3 power-play to grab the lead on a Kyle Beach goal, his tenth goal of the season at 17:54. Alec Richards stopped 27 shots, giving him a total of 10 wins, tying him for the team lead with Hannu Toivonen.
Rockford takes on Houston On Wenesday and then Texas on Friday and Saturday.
With an easy week, the Houston Aeros had just one game to play this week, taking a 4-1 win over the Texas Stars on Friday. It was Houston’s third straight, extending the home points streak to nine games. The Aeros have won 11 of their last 14 games and are sitting in third place in the division with 62 points. Patrick O’Sullivan, at the 6:13 mark of the second on a power play goal, notched his 400th pro point. O’Sullivan struck again on another power play goaltender at 9:19 of the third. 38 seconds later, Jarod Palmer made it a 3-0 Houston lead. Maxim Noreau netted an empty-net goal in the final minute. Netminder Anton Khudobin turned aside 31 shots from Texas.
Houston will get back to it on Tuesday to once again take on Texas, then Rockford Wednesday and Peoria on Friday.
The Stars were defeated by the Houston Aeros 4-1 Friday night, their seventh time defeating the Stars this season. Goalie Brent Krahn stopped 32 in his first start since November. Left wing Luke Gazdic scored the Stars lone goal off a rebound for his sixth goal of the year at 15:06 on the power play in the third.
The Stars got their win on Saturday, defeating the Oklahoma City Barons 3-0 in front of 5,738 home fans at Cedar Park Center. Goalie Richard Bachman made 30 saves for the win, posting his fourth shutout of the year. Left wing Ondrej Roman scored two goals minutes apart, at 6:53 on the power play and at 8:24, in the first period to give the Stars the early lead. Left winger Brandon Segal. at 7:52 of the third period, scored his third goal of the season.
Texas will see Houston again on Tuesday, Rockford on Friday and Saturday.