NORFOLK – Patrick Maroon scored to force overtime late in regulation, but the Norfolk Admirals (10-12-1-0) fell to the Bridgeport Sound Tigers (12-11-1-1), 4-3, after Casey Cizikas' overtime goal on Friday night at Norfolk Scope Arena.
Devante Smith-Pelly and Peter Holland also scored for the Admirals. Frederik Andersen (7-7-0) was saddled with the loss after stopping 23 of 27 shots. Norfolk suffered its first setback of the season in a game that lasted longer than regulation.
The same two teams face off tomorrow night at Scope at 7:15 p.m.
Bridgeport took a 1-0 lead with a power play goal 3:36 into the opening period. Moments after Sound Tigers goaltender Anders Nilsson thwarted a Norfolk shorthanded breakaway, Brock Nelson carried the puck into the right wing. A Norfolk defender knocked him off the puck. The puck slid back into the right circle where John Persson found it and scored, breaking the streak of Norfolk opponent power plays killed at 33 since November 24th.
However, the Admirals dominated much of the remainder of the first period, out-shooting the Sound Tigers, 15-4 and tying the score at 1-1 less than four minutes after the Persson strike. Kyle Palmieri deked around a defender and sent a shot that Nilsson stopped. After Holland got one shot at the rebound, Smith-Pelly was able to chip the puck up and over the prone goaltender for his third goal of the season at 7:10.
Bridgeport re-claimed the lead 1:13 into the second period. Brock Nelson took the puck from near the left corner and skated behind the net. He wrapped a shot around the opposite post and through Andersen’s legs to put the visitors ahead, 2-1.
The Admirals tied the game at 2-2 with a power play goal midway through the second period. Jordan Hendry lofted a wrist shot from the high slot through traffic. Holland deflected the puck down and past Nilsson at 9:06 for his team-leading eleventh goal of the season.
The Sound Tigers took a 3-2 lead early in the third period on a goal by former Admirals defenseman Ty Wishart. Nino Niederreiter picked off a pass in the right corner. He sent it to Wishart in the high slot, and Wishart shot the puck through traffic and past a screened Andersen at 3:31.
The Admirals tied the game at 3-3 with just 2:45 remaining in regulation. Chris Wagner sent a pass across the crease from the left circle. Maroon one-timed the puck past Nilsson for his seventh goal of the season to force overtime.
A hooking penalty to Norfolk's Sami Vatanen 50 seconds into overtime and a tripping penalty to Bridgeport's Nino Niederreiter 2:08 into overtime led to three-on-three hockey. Holland and Palmieri created a few chances on the three-on-three before Casey Cizikas carried the puck into the Norfolk zone along the right wing. He sent a shot that Andersen slowed. However, the puck crossed the goal line. The play was reviewed and deemed to be a good goal, giving Bridgeport the win.
Nilsson (6-6-0) stopped 27of 30 shots for the win.
Both teams were 1-for-6 on the power play.
The puck drops tomorrow night at Scope between the Admirals and Sound Tigers at 7:15 p.m. in Pucks ‘n’ Paws Night to benefit the Virginia Beach SPCA and Chesapeake Humane Society. Also tomorrow, the Admirals will hold their second post-game skate of the season where fans can skate at Scope with their favorite Admirals following the game. A limited number of skates will be available or fans may bring their own skates.
Don’t miss a minute of Admirals action by purchasing your 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. Casey Cizikas – BRI
2. Patrick Maroon – NOR
3. Ty Wishart – BRI
NOTES … With a goal and an assist tonight, Peter Holland has multiple-point performances in four of his last five games (2g, 6a) … Jordan Hendry has points in back-to-back games (1g, 1a) and four of his last five games (2g, 2a) after not recording a point in his first 13 games of 2012-13 … Sami Vatanen (0g, 3a) and Brandon McMillan (2g, 1a) saw three-game point streaks end … Norfolk's streak of opponent power plays ended as 33 consecutive kills after Persson's first period power play goal. Norfolk went 321:36 without surrendering a power play goal between a Chad Kolarik marker at 2:40 into the first period on November 24th at Connecticut and Persson's goal 3:36 into the first period tonight … The Admirals were the last of the 30 teams in the AHL to suffer a loss after regulation (overtime or shootout loss) … Did not play: Nate Guenin, Matt Smaby, Corey Elkins.