Griffins' Eight Game Home Point Streak Comes to an End
GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. - Rocco Grimaldi's hat trick halted Grand Rapids' eight-game home point streak (5-0-2-1), as the Griffins fell to the Milwaukee Admirals 5-2 on Saturday at Van Andel Arena. The defeat also ended a six-game point streak (5-0-1-0) versus the Admirals.
After tonight's 200th overall meeting, the Griffins now hold a 107-70-7-8-8 record over Milwaukee. Muskegon, Mich., native Justin Abdelkader made his season debut tonight, setting the new standard for longest time span between Griffins appearances at 4,305 days, or 11 years, nine months and 12 days (April 10, 2010 to Jan. 22, 2022). Gemel Smith also made his season debut, logging an even plus-minus rating. Matt Berry tallied his first goal as a Griffin in the contest.
Milwaukee scored the game's first goal at 4:25. Grimaldi took a long shot at netminder Victor Brattstrom, but the goalie made the save. Matt Donavan at the left circle, secured the rebound and fired the puck into the right corner of the net.
Fifty-four seconds later, Jon Martin connected with Dennis Yan at the blue line. Yan then skated down the high slot and ripped a one-timer into the right side of the net to tie the game 1-1 with 14:41 left in the period.
The Admirals opened the scoring in the middle frame with a tally at 5:18. On a two-on-one, Tommy Novak fired a shot toward net but Brattstrom made the stop. Grimaldi got to the rebound at the left wing and sent his wrister into the top right corner to give Milwaukee a 2-1 advantage.
With 6:54 remaining in the second, Donovan Sebrango passed the puck through traffic and across the zone to Berry. Berry at the right circle sent a laser over the left shoulder of goaltender Connor Ingram for his first Griffins goal to tie the contest at two.
Milwaukee controlled the final period of play, as they notched three goals to secure the victory. Frederic Allard fired a shot from the right wing toward the net but was deflected into the goal by his teammate Cole Schneider, giving the Admirals the lead once more at 5:30.
With 3:11 remaining in the third, Grimaldi skated toward the cage along the wing and went left-to-right to put the puck past the right shoulder of the netminder.
Grand Rapids pulled Brattstrom for an extra skater at 16:58, giving Grimaldi a chance to score once more. The winger stole the puck from the defense at the blue line and sent it into the empty net with 24 seconds remaining, giving him a hat trick and Milwaukee a 5-2 victory.
*Grimaldi's hat trick was the first the Griffins have allowed since Chicago's Andrew Poturalski captured three on Oct. 31, 2021.
*Taro Hirose saw his three-game point streak (2-2-4) come to an end.
Milwaukee 1 1 3 - 5
Grand Rapids 1 1 0 - 2
1st Period-1, Milwaukee, Donovan 5 (Grimaldi, Novak), 4:25. 2, Grand Rapids, Yan 6 (Martin), 5:19. Penalties-No Penalties
2nd Period-3, Milwaukee, Grimaldi 15 (Novak, Luff), 5:18. 4, Grand Rapids, Berry 1 (Sebrango, Renouf), 13:06. Penalties-Shine Gr (slashing), 1:19; Healey Mil (tripping), 10:51.
3rd Period-5, Milwaukee, Schneider 15 (Allard, Richard), 5:30. 6, Milwaukee, Grimaldi 16 (Glass, Schneider), 16:49. 7, Milwaukee, Grimaldi 17 (Schneider, Donovan), 19:36 (EN). Penalties-Shine Gr (cross-checking), 10:43; Afanasyev Mil (high-sticking), 13:40.
Shots on Goal-Milwaukee 14-8-10-32. Grand Rapids 11-13-7-31.
Power Play Opportunities-Milwaukee 0 / 2; Grand Rapids 0 / 2.
Goalies-Milwaukee, Ingram 13-10-3 (31 shots-29 saves). Grand Rapids, Brattstrom 2-4-2 (31 shots-27 saves).
1. MIL Grimaldi (hat trick, assist); 2. MIL Novak (two assists); 3. GR Berry (goal)
Record / Next Game
Grand Rapids: 15-12-4-2 (36 pts.) / Mon., Jan. 24 vs. Toronto 7 p.m.
Milwaukee: 16-18-2-2 (36 pts.) / Wed., Jan. 26 vs. Grand Rapids 6 p.m. CST
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