Griffins Claim 3-2 Victory In Milwaukee
MILWAUKEE- The Grand Rapids Griffins finished off a season-high six-game road trip with a 3-2 win over the Milwaukee Admirals at the Bradley Center on Thursday.
The Griffins had posted a misleading 0-7-1-0 mark during their last eight trips to Suds City, but the win puts them within 10 points of Manitoba for the fourth and final playoff berth in the North Division.
The two teams will travel back to Grand Rapids on Friday for a 7:00 p.m. rematch at Van Andel Arena.
After a scoreless first period in which Grand Rapids out shot Milwaukee by a commanding 14-6 count, the Griffins grabbed a 1-0 lead at 4:35 of the middle frame. From the bottom of the right circle, Jeremy Williams took a feed from Doug Janik and unleashed a one-time blast into the top left corner of the net.
Milwaukee answered at 10:34 of the period, cashing in on its first power play opportunity of the night. In a two-on-one rush, Jonathon Blum tried a shot from the right circle and after it caromed off the Griffins' defense, he slammed home a bouncing puck from just a few feet above the goal line.
In the third period, Williams broke a 1-1 deadlock when he redirected Janik's slap shot from the right point at the 9:08 mark. On the play, Mattias Ritola picked up a secondary assist, marking his 100th point (38-62-100) as a Griffin.
Grand Rapids went ahead 3-1 when Justin Abdelkader entered the zone on the right wing side and cut to the middle of the rink to beat a sprawled out Dekanich from the left side of the crease.
At 15:14, the Admirals climbed to within one when Blum gathered Dave Scatchard's rebound in the slot and flipped in a backhander for his second power play tally of the night.
Grand Rapids stood strong defensively for the remainder of regulation, including the final 16 seconds when Milwaukee pulled their goaltender during a power play for a six-on-four advantage.
Daniel Larsson made 26 saves in the win, while Dekanich turned aside 33 shots in the loss.
Three Stars: 1. GR Williams (2 goals); 2. MIL Blum (2 goals); 3. GR Janik (2 assists).
View this game's official box score at griffinshockey.com.
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