The Oklahoma City Barons came into Saturday’s game red hot, winners of their last seven in a row. The Milwaukee Admirals looked to break this streak and protect home ice in the second game of a five game home stand. Fans filed into the BMO Harris Bradley Center with teddy bears in tow for the annual Teddy Bear Toss, benefiting the local UMOS non-profit organization. The beginning of the game displayed a defensive slugfest with both teams working hard to protect their goal. The Admirals dominated the puck for the majority of the opening minutes of the period, until the Baron’s Brad Hunt scored the first goal of the game with almost six minutes elapsed. Halfway through the period, Colton Sissons scored his seventh goal of the season for the Admirals, and it rained teddy bears onto the ice. The Barons opened the game up a bit in the second period, converting two of their three power-play opportunities to take the two goal lead into the second intermission.
At the beginning of the third period with the Admirals down by two goals, the center Frederick Gaudreau came alive. After a quick goal early in the period by the Baron’s Ryan Hamilton, there was a goalie change to Magnus Hellberg who would go on to save both of the Baron’s shot attempts in his brief time on the ice. The Admirals refused to go away however and put pressure on Laurent Brossoit, who manned the goal for the Barons all night. After the initial shot by Joe Piskula, Gaudreau was in the right place at the right time and was able to put the rebound in and bring the Admirals back to within two. Gaudreau was again Johnny on the spot and was able to get yet another score off of a rebound, his second of the night, and the Admirals had life going into the final eight minutes of the game.
Gaudreau came into last night’s game with only one goal on the season, but his two late goals put the Admirals in position to tie the game and force an overtime. With momentum and a power-play opportunity late in the period, the Admirals had hope. They continued to play aggressively, getting several more quality looks at the goal late, but Brossoit would prove to be too strong coming down the stretch. The Admirals weren’t able to convert the late power-play opportunity, which was the story for them all night. The Barons would add one more goal late in the period on an empty net to make the final 5-3, for their eighth straight win.
The Admirals played in attack mode all night and were able to get sixteen more shots than the Barons but the failure to convert on the power-play did them in. The Barons were able to convert on two of their six opportunities, and their two power-play goals in the second period would put them up for good. The Admirals didn’t see any power-play goals in five chances. Despite the late game heroics by Gaudreau, the Admirals were unable to get the win, and they look to turn it around quickly with the Grand Rapid Griffins in town on Sunday.