NORFOLK, VA – Brandon Bochenski netted a goal with 29 seconds remaining to draw the Admirals within a goal of the Penguins. However, Norfolk (6-12-1-3) fell to Wilkes-Barre/Scranton (11-9-1-1) 4-3 on Friday night at Norfolk Scope Arena.
The Penguins struck first with a power play goal from Bill Thomas. Thomas sent a shot from along the goal line in the left corner that squirted between the post and right leg of Norfolk netminder Karri Ramo at 16:12 of the first period.
The Admirals responded in the last minute of the opening period. Juraj Simek sent a pass from the right corner to the left point. Daryl Boyle stepped into a one-timer that went through a screen and into the net at 19:39 for his second goal of the season. The teams skated to the locker rooms tied at 1-1 after one period.
The Penguins reclaimed the lead midway through the second period with a shorthanded goal. Connor James picked off an Admirals pass in the high slot of his own zone and sent it to Dustin Jeffrey in the neutral zone to start a two-on-one break. Jeffrey sent a pass from the left circle across the slot in front of a diving defender and James redirected it top-shelf, glove-side on Ramo at 12:25.
Norfolk once again responded with a goal in the last minute of a period. While skating on the power play, Zenon Konopka sent a pass from the left half wall to Blair Jones at the left point. Jones accepted the pass, took one stride toward the left circle and sent a slap shot high over the right shoulder of Wilkes-Barre/Scranton goaltender David Brown at 19:16 of the second stanza to knot the score at 2-2.
Wilkes-Barre took a 3-2 lead 10:57 into the third period. Ben Lovejoy took a shot from the right point that was blocked in the slot back out to James in the right circle. James fired a shot past the glove of a diving Ramo for his second goal of the game.
Jeff Taffe then doubled the Penguin lead to two goals just under six minutes later. Chris Minard took a shot that went wide and bounced off the end boards. The carom ended up on the stick of Taffe, who sent a shot past Ramo glove-side at 16:35.
Norfolk drew to within a goal of Wilkes-Barre/Scranton with yet another goal in the last minute of a period. With Ramo pulled for an extra attacker, Brandon Bochenski sent a wrist shot from the bottom of the right faceoff circle high over Brown’s left shoulder with 29 seconds remaining.
However, the Admirals could not find the equalizer in the final seconds.
Karri Ramo (29 shots, 25 saves) registered the loss. David Brown (29 shots, 36 saves) got the win.
Norfolk was 1-6 on the power play. Wilkes-Barre/Scranton was 1-5.
The Admirals and Penguins will face off again tomorrow night at Scope at 7:15. The Admirals and Alliance Heating & Air will be "Teaming Up for a Good Fight" to raise funds for the Children’s Hospital of the King’s Daughters (CHKD) Childhood Cancer Program. Alliance Heating & Air will pass out special tee shirts to the first 1,000 mothers through the gates. Also on Saturday night, Miss Virginia 2008 and former Penn State University Lady Icers goaltender Tara Wheeler will be in attendance for a special intermission event.
To purchase tickets to any Admirals game, you may visit the Scope Box Office weekdays from 10 a.m. to 5:30 p.m., visit any Ticketmaster outlet, call Ticketmaster at (757) 671-8100 or visit Ticketmaster online at www.ticketmaster.com. Don’t miss a minute of the action by purchasing your 2008-09 season tickets today. Stop by the Admirals’ Administrative Offices at Scope, call (757) 640-1212 weekdays from 9:30 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. or visit norfolkadmirals.com anytime!
1. Connor James – WBS
2. Brandon Bochenski – NOR
3. Jeff Taffe – WBS
Notes … With a goal tonight, Blair Jones is now on a four-game scoring streak (3G, 4A) and has goals in three straight contests … Grant Potulny has points (1G, 2A) in both games since joining the Admirals in a trade from San Antonio … Brandon Bochenski has points in five of the last seven games (5G, 3A) … Since Norfolk’s last game on Wednesday, defensemen Andrew Hutchinson and Matt Smaby and forward Steve Downie were recalled from Tampa Bay … The Admirals recalled forward Mathieu Curadeau from the IHL’s Fort Wayne Komets yesterday. Curadeau made his Admirals debut tonight … Scratch: F Pete Zingoni … F Jay Rosehill served the second game of a four-game suspension levied by the AHL earlier this week … Attendance: 4,108.