Smolenak, Radek

AHL Game Night: 1-23-10 Admirals at Monarchs

Jim Johnson is 2-0-0 as Head Coach.

NOR-5
MAN-3

Jaroslav Janus allowed 3 goals on 20 shots for the win. He has to be basking in all this goal support he's suddenly getting.

First Period
MCH Gauthier, (7) (Holloway, Cavanagh), 3:42
NOR Smolenak, (6) (Craig, Mihalik), 19:08

Second Period
NOR Fadden, (1) (Wishart, Parrish), 3:32 (PP)
NOR Fornataro, (2) (Quick, Fadden), 6:05
MCH Walker, (3) (Clune, Elkins), 17:25

Third Period
MCH Westgarth, (8) (King, Kolomatis), 10:13
NOR Hall, (9) (Smolenak, Krajicek), 16:59
NOR Smolenak, (7) (Wishart), 19:18 (EN)

Adam Hall and Mitch Fadden were the game's first and second stars. Norfolk outshot Manchester, which is in first place in the Atlantic Division, by a stunning 49-20 margin. The recent changes to the Norfolk staff have, if nothing else, lit a fire under the team.

Fadden scored his first AHL goal in the game and has 4 points over the past 2 games after going scoreless for the first 15 games of his pro career. The consensus on Fadden has always been that if he commits himself to hustle defensively and physically, and he learns to train like a pro, he can be a scorer not just at this level but up top in the NHL as well. He's struggled with some injuries and he'll probably need a big boy workout regime to build himself up this offseason to help prevent those, but the effort level has been way up with Fadden and the floodgates have finally opened this weekend. The Lightning have to be very pleased to see him coming on.

Speaking of which, Ty Wishart has 3 multi-point games in his last 4 contests. He's playing his way into the conversation for next year's Lightning blueline.

The best news for the Admirals may have been 2 goals and 1 assist by Radek Smolenak. With Brandon Bochenski up in Tampa and Martins Karsums off in Riga, Latvia, Norfolk needs all hands on deck in the scoring department. Smolenak had just 2 points in the 15 games prior to tonight's contest. Smolenak had 24 goals last season, but he only had 5 coming into tonight. He needs to get hot as the Admirals try to climb the ladder back into playoff contention.

Norfolk picks up 2 points on Adirondack and Wilkes-Barre/Scranton and keeps pace with Binghamton with the win. So, the Admirals move within 4 points of the Penguins for the final playoff spot. That's the good news. The bad news is that the Phantoms, who are 3 points ahead of the Ads, have 2 games in hand on Norfolk and the Senators, who are 2 points ahead of the Ads, have 3 games in hand. So, every point is extremely precious for Norfolk right now.

Box score from TheAHL.com.

AHL Game Night: 1-2-09 Admirals at Phantoms

Janus loses a squeaker in his return to the Admirals.

NOR-2
ADK-3

Jaroslav Janus allowed 3 goals on 33 shots for the loss. Interesting factoid: Janus makes three members of the Admirals from the mean streets of Presov, Slovakia (Mihalik and Simek).

First Period
ADK Matsumoto, (15) (Laliberte, Nodl), 5:09
NOR Simek, (8) (Wishart, Syroczynski), 17:04 (PP)
ADK Nodl, (4) (Mormina, Laliberte), 19:59

Second Period
NOR Simek, (9) (Smolenak, Krajicek), 8:15
ADK Legein, (16) (Curry, Mormina), 9:44 (PP)

Third Period
NO SCORING

Juraj Simek was named the game's second star.

In 19 games since returning to Norfolk from his recall to Tampa, Ryan Craig has just 3 goals. With Brandon Bochenski now up with the Lightning, it's going to be critical for Craig, along with other guys like Radek Smolenak, to step up. On a similar note, don't you wish the Lightning's more touted prospects all were playing as well as an unheralded guy like Juraj Simek?

Box score from TheAHL.com.

AHL Game Night: 12-4-09 Admirals at Phantoms

Love that headline on the press release from the Admirals. Move over Iverson.

NOR-2
ADK-1 (OT)

Dustin Tokarski stopped 22 of 23 to get a win the Admirals absolutely needed to have.

First Period
ADK Kolanos, (4) (Dingle, Bellamy), 3:42

Second Period
NOR Smolenak, (3) (Lundin, Mihalik), 17:47

Third Period
NO SCORING

Overtime
NOR Craig, (9) (Smolenak, Jackson), 1:32

Ryan Craig (aka The Answer) and Radek Smolenak were the game's first and second stars. That's what you have to love about this year's version of the Admirals: sweet, sweet depth up front. Blair Jones has been hot as a firecracker and earned his callup. Last season that would've crushed the Ads. This season you've got a 20 goal, 50 point capable guy like Smolenak just waiting to pick up where Jones left off.

Vladimir Mihalik snapped a five-game pointless streak with a helper and pulled himself back to even in plus-minus for the season. Kudos to Scott Jackson for keying Craig and Smolenak's winning 2-on-1 in overtime. Jackson's posted a very respectable +8 rating so far this year.

Norfolk outshot Adirondack 36-23 in the game. I'm still waiting for when these shot imbalances are going to turn into some nice blowouts in the Admirals' favor rather than these nail biters. Norfolk's played so many close games this year. Norfolk can get back to .500 tomorrow night, but they'll have to do it in Hershey, which may be the toughest place in the AHL to go win a hockey game as a visitor.

Box score from TheAHL.com.

AHL Game Night: 11-14 Admirals at River Rats

Another one gets away from the Admirals late.

NOR-1
ALB-2 (OT)

Riku Helenius allowed 2 goals on 27 shots for the overtime loss. That's a tough fate for a goaltender who played over 58 minutes of shutout hockey tonight. He didn't get the goal support he's become accustomed to, however.

First Period
NO SCORING

Second Period
NO SCORING

Third Period
NOR Smolenak, (1) (Jones, Bochenski), 4:46
ALB Dwyer, (8) (Carson, FitzGerald), 18:05

Overtime
ALB Boychuk, (5) (Dwyer, Paiement), 1:46

Radek Smolenak was named the game's third star. If I told you coming into the year that it would take 17 games for Radek to get his first goal and the team would be .500 and sitting in fourth in the division without his goal production, you'd have laughed at me, I'm sure.

Box score from TheAHL.com.

AHL Game Night: 10/10 Monarchs at Admirals

Spoon!

MAN-0
NOR-2

Dustin Tokarski pitched a 26 save shutout in just his second professional start. Exciting.

First Period
NO SCORING

Second Period
NO SCORING

Third Period
NOR Bochenski, (2) (Simek, Szczechura), 5:54
NOR Craig, (1) (Wishart), 19:20 (EN)

Tokarski and Brandon Bochenski were the game's first and second stars, respectively.

Norfolk outshot Manchester 39-26 in the game. Radek Smolenak was in the lineup after being reclaimed off waivers from the Blackhawks.

Box score from TheAHL.com.

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