NORFOLK, Va. – The Norfolk Admirals saw their 2010-11 season come to an end last week as they dropped four consecutive contests to the Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Penguins in their East Division Semifinal Series. Despite the loss, the Admirals have several positives to take from the 2010-11 season that they can apply to 2011-12.
Last week, the Admirals had a 2-0 series lead entering Game Three at Scope on Tuesday. However, in the span of three hours on Tuesday evening, Norfolk lost Mattias Ritola and Blair Jones due to NHL recall and both Chris Durno and Paul Szczechura to injury. In Tuesday's Game Three, the Admirals fell to the Penguins, 2-1. The following night, Wilkes-Barre/Scranton came out on top in Norfolk, 4-2. Ritola and Jones returned on Friday, but it wasn't enough as the Admirals fell in Game Five at Scope, 2-1. Norfolk's season came to an end on Saturday in Wilkes-Barre/Scranton as the Penguins claimed Game Six, 6-3, and the series, four games to two.
The Admirals finished 2010-11 with their first playoff berth in four years.
Norfolk has improved its season point total by nine or more points in each of the last three seasons, going from 65 points in 2007-08 to 93 points in 2010-11.
The Admirals scored 57 more goals in 2010-11 than they did in 2009-10.
Norfolk's attendance increased by over 16 percent in 2010-11 – the largest single-season increase in AHL Admirals history and the third-highest jump in the American Hockey League over last season.
An average of 4,490 fans per game came to Scope to see the Admirals in 2010-11 – up from 3,855 in 2009-10.
Four of the top ten highest-attended games in AHL Admirals history occurred in 2010-11:
January 15, 2011 vs. Bridgeport – 8,103 (4th)
January 19, 2011 vs. Springfield – 7,780 (5th)
February 19, 2011 vs. Wilkes-Barre/Scranton – 7,737 (6th)
April 2, 2011 vs. Hershey – 7,639 (7th)
Marc-Antoine Pouliot led Norfolk in both regular season and post-season scoring. Pouliot scored four goals and three assists for seven points in the East Division Semifinals. He had a part in seven of Norfolk's 11 goals in the series.
Jones, Tokarski and Mattias Ritola have been recalled by the Tampa Bay Lightning. The Lightning won Game Six against the Pittsburgh Penguins last night to force a decisive Game Seven tomorrow night in Pittsburgh in their Eastern Conference Quarterfinals Series.
The team that scored first won all six games of the East Division Semifinals between Norfolk and Wilkes-Barre/Scranton.
Wilkes-Barre/Scranton will face the Charlotte Checkers in the East Division Finals beginning Thursday. Charlotte defeated the two-time defending Calder Cup Champion Hershey Bears four games to two in their East Division Semifinals series.
2011 CALDER CUP PLAYOFFS DIVISION SEMIFINAL SERIES UPDATES:
TICKETS Season tickets for the 2011-12 season are now available! 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 for more details or to purchase your tickets!