Norfolk Admirals

AHL Game Night: 4-3-10 Admirals at Senators

Admirals fall one goal, one period short.

NOR-3
BNG 5

Dustin Tokarski allowed 4 goals on 29 shots for the loss. He's played so well as the workhorse since Jaroslav Janus went down. It's a shame on the night he finally got 3 goals worth of support, he couldn't make it stand up.

First Period
NOR Lashoff, (8) (Tyrell, Hall), 8:04

Second Period
BNG St. Pierre, (24) (Lee, Kinrade), 0:34
BNG O'Brien, (8) (Svendsen, Bailey), 5:25
BNG Daugavins, (20) (Hennessy, Smith), 10:59
BNG Tifu, (3) (Hamel, Lee), 12:16

Third Period
NOR Parrish, (16) (St. Pierre, Szczechura), 14:14
NOR Fornataro, (10) (Tarkir, Fadden), 16:30 (PP)
BNG Keller, (32) (Smith, Hennessy), 19:46 (EN/PP)

Binghamton goaltender Mike Brodeur picked a heckuva time to stand on his head. Norfolk outshot the Senators 42-30, but in the end the Sens got the goaltending they needed to pull out the victory.

Norfolk burned their game in hand on Wilkes-Barre/Scranton and got nothing out of it, so they'll remain 3 points back of the Pens for 3rd place in the East Division. In the crossover, Lowell defeated Worcester in overtime 3-2 and Bridgeport fell 3-1 to Portland. So, all is not lost for the Admirals. They're 4 points back of the Devils and 2 points back of the Sound Tigers while still holding a game in hand on each team.

Unfortunately, the remaining 4 games of the schedule are incredibly difficult, on paper. Norfolk will burn their game in hand tomorrow and could be back in a playoff spot with a win. But, they must win in Hershey to pull off that feat and Hershey is a ridiculous 32-4-0-2 at the Giant Center this season. That will be Norfolk's last road game of the season. The balance of the schedule includes Wilkes-Barre/Scranton and then another back-to-back games against defending champion Hershey and it's league best 57-15-0-3 record, with their 57 wins already being the highest single season total in the history of the AHL. But, games are not played on paper, and Norfolk has played Hershey fairly close under Head Coach Jim Johnson, so the Admirals have at least a puncher's chance.

Box score from TheAHL.com.

Lightning Return Jim Johnson to Admirals Bench

TAMPA BAY, Fla. – The Tampa Bay Lightning have assigned Assistant Coach Jim Johnson to the position of Head Coach of the Norfolk Admirals today, Lightning Executive Vice President and General Manager Brian Lawton announced.

The move comes as the Admirals are one of four teams battling for three spots in the push for the Calder Cup Playoffs. Norfolk trails Wilkes Barre-Scranton by three points and are two points behind Bridgeport as well as Lowell though they have a game in hand on each team. The Admirals are currently in Binghamton for a 7:05 p.m. game tonight.

“I am extremely excited to get back behind the bench tonight for the Admirals,” said Johnson today. “We have a great group of players in Norfolk and I am excited to get there with them as we push towards making the playoffs."

AHL Game Night: 4-2-10 Admirals at River Rats

Against all odds, Keller, Tokarski, and the Admirals have life.

NOR-2
ALB-1

Dustin Tokarski allowed 1 goal on 32 shots for the win. He's been good down the stretch, and he'll need to be amazing in the final 5 games of the season to get the Admirals over the hump.

First Period
ALB Blanchard, (14) (Micflikier, Samson), 12:37
NOR Keller, (16) (Jones), 16:03

Second Period
NO SCORING

Third Period
NOR Keller, (17) (Case, Jackson), 13:29

Justin Keller and Tokarski were the game's first and second stars.

Tonight was supposed to be a funeral for the Norfolk Admirals. With Ty Wishart out hurt and Lashoff and Mihalik called up due to injuries, the Admirals blueline consisted of Scott Jackson and a bunch of no-names. On the road. Against a hot Albany club that's dominated the series this season. And, somehow, the Admirals have parlayed doom into hope, despite being outclassed for much of tonight's game. They made their own breaks. Blair Jones made a great individual play to steal a puck to set up Keller on the first goal, Tokarski made every key save he had to to keep it 1-1, and then in the final frame, when the Ads looked to just be holding on for a point, Justin Keller got a little daylight and used his laser shot to propel Norfolk to the win. That's why they play the games.

It's now essentially a four team race for three spots, and everything looks to have gone Norfolk's way tonight. Inside the division, Binghamton smoked third place Wilkes-Barre/Scranton 6-2, meaning the Admirals are 3 points back of the Penguins. In the crossover, Lowell (which is struggling), fell 5-2 to Hartford and Bridgeport is down 4-1 to Manchester very late in the third period. If that score holds, Norfolk will be 2 points back of both the Devils and Monarchs, and in all three cases the Admirals will hold one game in hand.

Can they defy the odds again tomorrow night in Binghamton? If they do, they can pull within 1 point of the Penguins for 3rd place in the East Division. Moreover, they could pull back into a playoff spot if Lowell falls in regulation to Worcester and/or Bridgeport falls in regulation to Portland. Theoretically, with the Lightning off until Tuesday, the Admirals should get Matt Lashoff and Vladimir Mihalik back for tomorrow night, and one would hope a forward or two might also be thrown into the mix, because tomorrow is make-or-break for Norfolk, and Binghamton has been playing well.

Box score from TheAHL.com.

Lashoff Recalled by Lightning

(Norfolk Admirals release) The Tampa Bay Lightning, NHL parent club of the Norfolk Admirals, have recalled defenseman Matt Lashoff from the Admirals on an emergency basis, Lightning Executive Vice President and General Manager Brian Lawton announced today.

Lashoff, a 6-foot-2, 205-pound defenseman from East Greenbush, New York, has appeared in 66 games with Norfolk this season, scoring seven goals and 23 points with 94 penalty minutes. He also has four power play goals and one game-winning goal. He ranks second among club defensemen in scoring and ranks second overall in penalty minutes.

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