Admirals drop New Year’s Day game to Grand Rapids

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The Milwaukee Admirals and Grand Rapids Griffins will play at the UW-Milwaukee Panther Arena on January 1st, 2022. (Courtesy: Milwaukee Admirals)

Mitch McLain and Egor Afanasyev scored goals for the Milwaukee Admirals, but it wasn’t enough to beat them 4-2 on Saturday night at the UW-Milwaukee Panther Arena at the UW-Milwaukee Panther Arena on Saturday night Griffins lost.

The Admirals came strong out of the gate, shooting the Griffins 18-12 out in the first.

McLain brought Milwaukee onto the board with an awkward shorthanded tally with 6:18 in the first game. McLain intercepted a pass near the Admirals’ blueline and drove two-on-one with Mathieu Olivier. With a Griffins defender lying in front of him on the ice, McLain lifted the puck just over the right shoulder of Grand Rapids goalkeeper Chet Pickard for the ninth time this year.

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The second period would be exclusively Grand Rapids as they scored four goals in the first 14 minutes of the sandwich frame after starting just 58 seconds after Taro Hirose’s first game. Hirose scored his second goal of the evening a little over three minutes later when he picked up a loose puck in the slot and covered it from Admiral’s netminder Devin Cooley.

Donovan Sebrango and Ryan Murphy also scored goals for the Griffins in the second half to give them a 4-1 lead after 40 minutes of play.

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Afanasyev scored a goal for Milwaukee in the third period to reduce the lead to 4-2, but it was as close as possible. Kole Sherwood stopped a free-kick attempt by Pickard who met Afanasyev, who came off the net and tucked it into the right post.

Pickard made 33 saves on the net for Grand Rapids to take the win, while Devin Cooley made 25 saves for the ads but took the loss.

The Admirals and Griffins are returning around Lake Michigan to go on the ice for the fourth consecutive year at 6 p.m. CST next Wednesday, January 5. Milwaukee’s next home game is on Friday, January 7th, when they host the Cleveland Monsters at 7:00 p.m.

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