Milwaukee Admirals (3) at Cleveland Monsters (5)
The Cleveland Monsters took down the Milwaukee Admirals in an outstanding 5-3 win. Hold onto your hats everyone! The eight goals between the two squads were pretty incredible.
The Admirals struck first a little over eight minutes into the first period. Emil Pettersson backhanded the puck past Hayden Hodgson and onto Bobby Butler's stick. Butler fired it right into the net.
The Monsters fired back with five minutes left in the period. Miles Koules glided towards Juuse Saros going backhand to forehand a few times before finding Calvin Thurkauf across the crease. Thurkauf would quickly put the puck into the net.
Paul Bittner gave the Monsters the 2-1 lead four minutes later. Dean Kukan fired the puck from near the far wall to Carter Camper who one-timed it to Bittner. Saros flew across the crease in an attempt to stop the shot. Bittner was able to fire the puck between Saros' pad and glove.
A series of beautiful passes from Alexandre Carrier and Butler led to Pontus Aberg scoring the Admirals second goal of the night. This goal was the first goal scored in the second period and it didn't come until the halfway point. It was also the last goal the Admirals would score in the second period.
A minute later, Camper gave the Monsters the 3-2 lead. Bittner shot the puck directly into Saros' pads. Sam Vigneault descended upon the puck and tried multiple times to push it into the net. The moment he saw Camper he passed the puck and Camper banged it home.
At the 18:24 mark of the second period Hayden Hodgson extended the Monsters lead to 4-2. He did a nifty little backhand sneak behind Saros to score that one.
Thirty seconds later, Justin Scott created a takeaway to score the fifth goal of the night for the Monsters.
The Admirals would score the lone third-period goal. With four minutes left to play, Tyler Moy scooped a rebound off of Matiss Kivlenieks and fired it into the net.
But Wait! There's More
- Miles Koules and Paul Bittner on a line is a thing of beauty. They communicate incredibly well and always seem to find each other at the right time. I think it helps they are both grinders who constantly attack the net.
- Putting grinders like Bittner, Koules, and Vigneault on the ice with Carter Camper is a nice touch by the coaches. Camper's mind is always moving. Night in and night out his goal is to create plays on as many shifts as possible. When you put Camper with guys who are constantly trying to make magic happen it allows him to take a moment to clear his mind and see all the possible outcomes of that shift.
- Joe Pendenza is great at directing his linemates where to place themselves during the faceoff. He seems to be able to anticipate how the opponent is going to approach puck drop. Also, Pendenza does this nifty thing where he kicks the puck to a teammate when he's tangled up with his opponent in the circle.
- It appears the power play has begun to click for the Monsters. Last night they went 2 for 4. They are on a slow incline to a successful power play unit.
“We've practiceed the power play quite a bit. We've watched a lot of videos. We've had our chances. To see it pay off tonight felt good.” - Carter Camper
- As I said in my preview, Jimmy Oligny has an infectious personality. Last night, he became frustrated when no one would take the bait and fight him. Not long after, the Admirals began to get chippy. Some got a little chippier than others as Pontus Aberg was given a 10-minute misconduct for “abuse of the official”. Having one of the Admirals best players out for half a period was quite beneficial to the Monsters.
- The Monsters do have a habit of only playing two periods of the game. Hopefully, they start playing all 60 minutes soon.
“We played good for two periods. Got away from our game in the third. Something I didn't want to see. We'll build on the positives. Every man out there played well for two periods.” - John Madden
- Matiss Kivlenieks is a powerhouse. Last night he made a skate save while lying on his back. Seems like a normal goalie thing, right? Well, his feet were in the net with his head pointing towards the blueline. Kivlenieks really had to let go and let God on that play.
1st – Carter Camper (1g, 2a)
2nd – Paul Bittner (1g, 1a)
3rd – Hayden Hodgson (1g, 0a)
Hodgson's highlight reel goal in the second period was his first professional goal.
The Monsters and Admirals play each other again on Saturday at 7pm. It's “Salute the Troops” night. Tickets will be free for those who have a military ID. Fans will be able to write a letter to the troops abroad at different locations in the concourse.