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STILL PERFECT IN REGULATION


MILWAUKEE – The Grand Rapids Griffins went into overtime for the third time in four road games this season and fell 3-2 to the Milwaukee Admirals at the Bradley Center on Halloween night in the first game of a home-and-home series.

Despite the loss, Grand Rapids (4-0-2-1) has earned a point in all seven of its game to start the 2008-09 campaign. The Griffins are also the only team in the AHL that has not lost in regulation. The Griffins will host the Admirals (3-4-0-1) tomorrow night at 7 p.m. in Van Andel Arena.

The Griffins scored the opening goal for the fifth time in their first seven games, this one coming courtesy of Landon Wilson just 44 seconds into the match. Wilson took a pass from Ville Leino and tucked a backhand shot under the right arm of Drew MacIntyre for his third goal of the season and a 1-0 Griffins lead.

Milwaukee tied the game on Stephen Werner’s first goal of the season at the 5:19 mark of the second period. After a face-off in the Griffins’ zone, Teemu Laakso launched a shot from the blue line that was knocked down in front of the net. The puck dropped about 15 feet in front of the Griffins’ cage and Werner lifted a shot over Jimmy Howard’s glove to make it a 1-1 game.

Justin Abdelkader scored his seventh goal of the season to put the Griffins back in the lead with 14:27 remaining in the game. Abdelkader established position in front of the Admirals’ net and jammed home a rebound from a Mattias Ritola shot to put the Griffins up 2-1. Abdelkader’s seven goals tie him for the lead among AHL rookies.

The Admirals took advantage of a great opportunity at the 14:12 mark of the third period to tie the game. Garrett Stafford tripped on a stick in the Griffins’ end and Kelsey Wilson took possession of the puck. Wilson played the puck to Mark Santorelli and he centered a pass to Cody Franson , whose shot from in front beat Howard to make it 2-2.

The Griffins controlled the puck for the first half of the overtime period, but after MacIntyre made a save on a Darren Haydar try, the Admirals charged the other way on a counter-attack. Cal O’Reilly corralled a drop pass and sent the puck over to Robert Dietrich, who walked in alone and beat Howard for the game-winner.

Howard finished the night with 24 saves for Grand Rapids, while MacIntyre stopped 30 shots in the Admirals’ net.

Three Stars: 1. MIL Dietrich (OT goal); 2. MIL Werner (1 goal, 1 assist); 3. GR Howard (24 saves, OT loss).

Griffins Game Rewind
WOOD Radio Highlights: 1 2
Official Game Report

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