The Norfolk Admirals live to see another day, at least.
Andre Petterson‘s power-play goal at the 13:10 mark of the first overtime period gave the Admirals the needed win over the St. John’s Ice Caps, staving off elimination from a 1-3 series deficit, and inching closer to the Caps as the series shifts back to St. John’s for Game Six.
It was one of St. John’s lowliest efforts of this post-season, despite out-shooting the Admirals in the first and second period, the Caps’ 7 shots in overtime were doubled by the Admirals, who put 14 shots on Michael Hutchinson in just 13 minutes, culminating in the game-winner from Petterson.
The Ice Caps took the first lead in the game when Eric O’Dell scored his third goal in two games at the 6:00 minute mark of the first period, shortly after killing off a Zach Redmond penalty. With time winding down in the period, Max Friberg scored an identical goal to that of O’Dell’s, with a great individual effort after recieving a pass from Zack Stortini, who was in the penalty box 10 seconds previous.
The game would remain tied until the third period, when Shea Theodore scored his first of the playoffs 48 seconds in to the final frame.
It seemed that would be all the Admirals would need to secure the win, as the Ice Caps couldn’t buy offense in the following minutes after the go-ahead-goal. However, it was the trusty O’Dell scoring his second of the night, and fourth in two games, with just 2:58 left on the clock. The tie would stand, and the two teams were off to overtime for the first time in the series.
The Admirals came out firing, just one goal-against away from playoff elimination. When Andrew Gordon took the first penalty of the extra period on a Tripping call, Norfolk had all they needed to wrap up a win. Petterson’s point shot handcuffed Michael Hutchinson on a weak goal, perhaps the Ice Caps’ first of the playoffs, but the damage was done.
Both goaltenders were outstanding all game long, with Hutchinson making 12 saves in overtime, stopping 34 of 37 in total. Admirals netminder Brad Thiessen stopped 36 of 38 en route to his first win of these playoffs.
Gordon commented on the Ice Caps’ mindset coming into the game, courtesy of The Telegram:
“Any time you have a team on the ropes 3-1, they’re ripe for the picking. But you have to outwork them … you have to work them into position where they don’t want to play anymore. And we let them hang around long enough to win the game.”
If there’s a silver lining to the Ice Caps’ loss, it’s that Game Six, (and Game Seven, if necessary) will be back at the Mile One Center in St. John’s, where the Caps are 3-1 so far in the post-season.
Game Six of the series from St. John’s is on Friday at 6:00 PM Central Time, and if the Admirals force Game Seven, it will come the next night at 6:00 PM.
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