NORFOLK, VA – After completing a brief three-game road trip last week, the Admirals will drop the puck on a nine-game homestand this week with three contests at Norfolk Scope Arena.
Last week, the Admirals picked up one win in three road contests against Atlantic Division opponents. On New Year’s Eve, Chris Gratton staked Norfolk to a 1-0 lead with his first goal as an Admiral and Mike McKenna made 28 saves against his former club. However, the Admirals saw their four-game winning streak end in a 2-1 loss to the Portland Pirates. On Friday night, Norfolk surrendered five unanswered goals and Riley Armstrong recorded a hat trick as the Admirals fell to the Worcester Sharks 5-1 at the DCU Center. On Saturday night back in Portland, McKenna turned aside 34 of 36 Pirates shots and Scott Jackson notched two assists as the Admirals closed out the brief trip by sinking the Pirates 3-2.
The Admirals will start off their nine-game homestand on Wednesday night against their archrivals, the Hershey Bears. On Friday and Saturday nights, the Admirals will look to dethrone the Manchester Monarchs. All Admirals home games begin at 7:15 p.m. at Norfolk Scope Arena. There are several exciting promotions and community efforts coming up this week. Please see below for more details.
EAST DIVISION STANDINGS At 14-18-1-4 (33 points), the Admirals are tied for sixth place in the East Division. The division is led by the Hershey Bears (26-9-0-1, 53 points). They are followed by the Bridgeport Sound Tigers (22-9-2-2, 48 points), Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Penguins (22-12-1-1, 46 points), Binghamton Senators (19-11-3-3, 44 points), Philadelphia Phantoms (19-15-1-1, 40 points) and Albany River Rats (14-17-3-2, 33 points). Click here for the complete, up-to-the-minute AHL standings.
THE ADMIRALS’ WEEK AHEAD Wed., Jan. 7 … vs. Hershey Bears (Washington Capitals) … 7:15 p.m. | GET TICKETS Fri., Jan. 9 … vs. Manchester Monarchs (Los Angeles Kings) … 7:15 p.m. | GET TICKETS Sat., Jan. 10 … vs. Manchester Monarchs (Los Angeles Kings) … 7:15 p.m. | GET TICKETS
The Admirals’ nine-game homestand is tied for the longest since the team’s inception in 1989-90. The only previous nine-game homestands both occurred during the 2004-05 season.
Norfolk has allowed two or fewer goals in seven of its last nine games.
On Friday in Worcester, the Admirals allowed multiple power play goals for the first time since December 6 at Bridgeport.
Norfolk allowed the first goal of the game for the first time in seven games on Saturday in Portland.
Steve Downie’s eight-game point streak ended on Wednesday in Portland. Downie had five goals and ten assists during the streak, which was Norfolk’s longest of the season.
Defenseman Ty Wishart made his NHL debut with Tampa Bay on Saturday versus Carolina.
Defenseman Vladimir Mihalik registered his first NHL point with an assist for Tampa Bay on Sunday at Atlanta.
After going without a goal in his first 112 professional games, Mike Lundin now has goals in each of Norfolk’s last two games.
Scott Jackson registered his first professional multiple point game with a pair of assists on Saturday in Portland.
Goaltender Riku Helenius made his AHL debut in relief on Friday night with Norfolk in Worcester.
Blair Jones has assists in five of the last seven games (6A).
ADMIRALS RBK/AHL PLAYER OF THE WEEK NOMINEE Chris Gratton: 3 GP, 1G, 2A, 3PTS, 0 PIM Veteran forward Chris Gratton registered points in all three of Norfolk’s games last week. On Wednesday in Portland, Gratton’s first goal as an Admiral was Norfolk’s only marker in a hard-fought 2-1 loss. On Friday in Worcester, Gratton assisted on Mike Lundin’s first professional goal in a 5-1 loss to the Sharks. Gratton then assisted on Steve Downie’s game-winning goal in Norfolk’s 3-2 victory at Portland on Saturday night. Gratton now has points in five of seven games (1G, 5A) since joining Norfolk.
– Family Fun Packs are available for every Wednesday and Thursday Admirals home game throughout the regular season. They offer four Red Level tickets, four hot dogs, four popcorns and four sodas for just $48 – that’s a savings of $37! Family Fun Packs are available at the Scope Box Office and online at ticketmaster.com. Click here to purchase a Family Fun Pack for January 7.
Student Rush Night – High school and college students with a valid school ID can get $8 White Level tickets only at the Scope Box Office after 2:00 p.m. on the day of the game. This offer is available on all Wednesday and Thursday home games throughout the regular season.
Gold’s Gym VIP Fan Pass Giveaway – The Admirals and Gold’s Gym will team up to help all Admirals fans who made a New Year’s resolution to get into better shape by giving all fans in attendance at Wednesday’s game a Gold’s Gym VIP Fan Pass.
Friday, January 9 (vs. Manchester Monarchs)
Literacy Night – As part of Literacy Month, the Admirals are encouraging fans to bring in new books to be donated in support of reading and literacy. Books will be donated by the Admirals to the Tidewater Literacy Council and the R.E.A.C.H. Organization.
Saturday, January 10 (vs. Manchester Monarchs)
TACT Fundraiser Night – The Admirals, Gold’s Gym and Decorum Furniture will team up in a fundraiser for the Tidewater AIDS Community Taskforce (TACT). Ten dollar tickets are available through the Monticello Avenue Gold’s Gym, the Norfolk and Virginia Beach Locations of Decorum Furniture, and the Admirals Group Sales Department. Twenty percent of each ticket goes back to TACT.
Cheesy Noisemaker Night – Fans are encouraged to bring boxes of macaroni and cheese to the game. During the game, show your Admirals spirit by using the boxes as noisemakers. After the game, drop the macaroni and cheese off at designated locations throughout the arena. The Tidewater AIDS Community Taskforce (TACT) will distribute the food to those in need in the Hampton Roads area.
THIS WEEK ON THE ADMIRALS HOUR Tune in to the Admirals Hour on Thursday evening at 6:00 p.m. on ESPN Radio 1310 WGH-AM. “The Voice of the Admirals” Pete Michaud will be joined in the studio by Admirals Captain Zenon Konopka. If you have a question for the show, please call (757) 497-1310 during the show or email firstname.lastname@example.org prior to 2:00 on Thursday afternoon.
ADMIRALS STREAKS AND TRENDS
Chris Gratton, Points in three straight games (1G, 2A since 12/31 at POR)
Mike Lundin, Goals in back-to-back games (2G since 01/02 at WOR)
Steve Downie, Points in 9 of last 11 games (6G, 10A since 11/16 at PRO)
Radek Smolenak, Points in 5 of last 7 games (4G, 2A since 12/17 vs. ALB)
Chris Gratton, Points in 5 of last 7 games (1G, 5A since 12/17 vs. ALB)
Blair Jones, Assists in 5 of last 7 games (6A since 12/17 vs. ALB)
Blair Jones, Points in 6 of last 9 games (1G, 6A since 12/12 vs. BRI)
Mike Lundin, Points in 3 of last 4 games (2G, 4A since 12/27 vs. PHI)
TRANSACTIONS OF THE PAST WEEK December 30, 2008 ADD RW Chris Lawrence – Reassigned by Tampa Bay (NHL) from Mississippi (ECHL)
ADD D Scott Jackson – Reassigned by Tampa Bay (NHL) from Mississippi (ECHL)
ADD F Mathieu Curadeau – Recalled from loan to Fort Wayne (IHL)
January 1, 2009 DELETE D Vladimir Mihalik – Recalled from loan by Tampa Bay (NHL)
ADD F/D Brent Henley – Recalled from loan to Mississippi (ECHL)
January 3, 2009 DELETE D Ty Wishart – Recalled from loan by Tampa Bay (NHL)
ADD D Mitch Ganzak – Signed to Professional Tryout Contract (PTO)
January 4, 2009 ADD D Ty Wishart – Returned on loan by Tampa Bay (NHL)
DELETE D Mitch Ganzak – Released from Professional Tryout Contract (PTO)
ADD D Vladimir Mihalik – Returned on loan by Tampa Bay (NHL)
TICKETS 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!
ON THE RADIO/INTERNET All games are broadcast on ESPN Radio 1310 WGH-AM. The games are also cybercast at SportsJuice.com. Go to SportsJuice.com, or click on the link at norfolkadmirals.com. Broadcasts begin 15 minutes prior to game time.
Games are also viewable through the Internet on a pay-per-view basis through AHL Live. Visit norfolkadmirals.com and click the AHL Live banner on the left side of the site to view all Admirals’ home and away games.