The Milwaukee Admirals, the primary development affiliate of the Nashville Predators, swept their weekend contests to bring them to 2-1 on this very young season. Great performances by both Milwaukee netminders and an on fire Yakov Trenin ensured Milwaukee’s victories. On Friday, the Admirals beat Central Division rival Grand Rapids (Detroit) 4-1. On Saturday, the Admirals beat the Laval Rocket (Montreal) in the first ever meetings of the teams, 4-2.
Friday 10/11/2019 vs. Grand Rapids Griffins (Away)
The Admirals’ powerplay was ready for this contest after a weaker showing in the first game again Iowa last Sunday. The Admirals were 2-for-3 on the powerplay throughout this game.
Anthony Richard scored his first goal of the season at 7:36 of the first period. Yakov Trenin (1) and Josh Wilkins (2) had the assists on this goal. The goal came after Grand Rapids’ Gustav Lindstrom was called for high-sticking. Richard’s goal appeared to beat goaltender Calvin Pickard’s five-hole, but admittedly the AHLTV camera folks chose an unfortunate time to switch camera angles.
At 8:37, Griffins defenseman Moritz Seider was called for tripping. This allowed Yakov Trenin to tip in a shot from the circle by Jeremy Davies passed Pickard. This was Trenin’s second goal of the season. Davies (1) and Wilkins (3) had the assists.
The Griffins would cut the lead in half when Chris Terry fired a slapshot from the circle during Jeremy Davies’ high-sticking minor. The goal came at 7:22 of the second. This would be the only goal scored on a red hot Troy Grosenick in this game.
Milwaukee would extend the lead quickly at 8:37 when Eeli Tolvanen fired an odd slapshot from the point to beat Pickard and make it 3-1. Matt Donovan (1) and Miikka Salomaki (1) had the assists.
The final goal of the game would come at 17:55 after Grand Rapids had pulled Pickard in favor of the extra attacker. Mathieu Olivier had an easy empty net goal as he slid the puck into the net to make it 4-1 Milwaukee. Final shots on goal were Grand Rapids 39 – 28 Milwaukee. A 38 save performance earned Grosenick the first star of the game.
Saturday 10/12/2019 vs. Laval Rocket (Home)
The Admirals faced the Laval Rocket for the first time ever on Saturday. It’s also the first time the Admirals have faced an affiliate of the Montreal Canadiens since 2015 (that being the Hamilton Bulldogs, who are no longer members of the AHL).
This was a physical game and both teams seemed evenly paced. Milwaukee was just able to connect. It didn’t take long for the Admirals to score their first goal of the game. Alexandre Carrier and Cole Schneider were able to force a turnover in the neutral zone which allowed Yakov Trenin (who has now scored in each of the Admirals’ first three games) to score at 3:46.
Late in the first period, Josh Brook scored for the Rockets at 14:20 to tie up the game. The puck was able to get through the legs of Milwaukee goaltender Connor Ingram.
The Rocket were able to take the lead at 17:29 of the first when Nikita Jevpalovs tipped in a shot from Otto Leskinen to make it 2-1 Laval.
Milwaukee would tie the game quickly in the second when Josh Wilkins would score his first professional goal at 1:38 with assists from Frederic Allard (1) and Eeli Tolvanen (1). Wilkins was fed the puck from Allard and had a beautiful shot over the left shoulder of Lindgren.
The Admirals would regain their lead at 9:55 when Cole Schneider ripped a wristshot from the middle of the circle that went right over the right shoulder of Lindgren. Rem Pitlick (1) and Matt Donovan (2) had the assists. This is Rem Pitlick’s first point with the Admirals for the season.
Scoring died down until 19:10, after the Rocket pulled Lindgren. Joe Pendenza forced a turnover in the neutral zone and passed it ahead to Yakov Trenin who fired a shot at the empty net. The puck was nicely tipped in by Laval Captain Xavier Oullet. Oullet proceeded to smash his stick on the goal post. The Admirals earned a 4-2 victory over Laval despite being outshot 30-23.
These were both great showings by the Admirals and showcased the power that I believed this team was capable of before the season started. I think it only gets better for the Admirals when Freddy Gaudreau, Arvin Atwal, and Laurent Dauphin return from their injuries.
The Milwaukee powerplay looked great in the Friday night contest with Grand Rapids. I’m going to refrain from giving percentages until we have a larger sample size, but from the eye test it looked good.
Tolvanen’s start looks better than last season. He is skating with more confidence. I do believe that once Milwaukee’s injuries are over we will see his numbers grow at a faster pace. He is currently sitting with one goal and one assist on the season.
Yakov Trenin has been centering the top line for Milwaukee so far and has looked great there. He’s leading the team with four goals and one assist. His progress this season will be fun to watch.
Both goaltenders had nice showings this weekend. Grosenick was outstanding in his Friday showing. Ingram looked good too, especially after coming off of that loss against Iowa last Sunday.
The Admirals won’t play again until Friday October 18th when they’ll play two games against the Colorado Eagles next weekend.
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