The Jacksonville Icemen fell to the Norfolk Admirals, 4-3, in a shootout on Thursday night at Veterans Memorial Arena. Despite their first-ever loss in the shootout, the Icemen still skate away with one point on the night.
Just over four minutes into the game, Cameron Critchlow made a skillful move around a defenseman to create a one-on-one chance with goalie Jamie Murray. Later in the period, Chase Harrison had two great chances off a rebound to give the Icemen the 1-0 lead, but Murray would deny every shot in the frame. In the first period, the Icemen played on the offensive, outshooting the Admirals 13-5.
Norfolk forward Grant Besse got in the goal column at 5:44 into the second period, giving the Admirals the 1-0 lead. Under four minutes later, John Rey had his shot deflected past Phinney to give Norfolk a two-goal lead, an unlucky bounce for Jacksonville. However, Scott Savage got the Icemen on the board before the end of the period with a one-time slapshot that found the twine to make the game 2-1 after 40 minutes.
Emerson Clark continued his incredible play just 57 seconds into the third period. After a chaotic scramble, Clark was able to score from the crease to tie the game at two. The jubilee would be short-lived as TJ Melancon responded for the Admirals less than three minutes later to regain the lead, 3-2. With under five minutes to play, Elgin Pearce fell down, got back to his skates, and buried the game-tying goal to force overtime.
The extra period featured quality scoring chances for both sides, including a Norfolk shot off the post. After five minutes, the game would head to the shootout to decide the victor.
Grant Besse struck again in the first round to give Norfolk the advantage. Jimmy Lodge, Ryan Graham and Brendan Collier weren’t able to convert on their attempts and the Icemen fell to the Admirals, 4-3.
The Icemen face off against the Admirals on Saturday, Dec. 2 at 7:30 p.m. Fans are encouraged to get to the arena early on Saturday, as the Guns and Hoses game featuring local police and firefighters takes place at 4:00 p.m. The first 3,000 fans in attendance receive an Icemen rally towel, courtesy of John Phillips. Fans are also encouraged to donate a toy benefitting Wolfson’s Children Hospital – Atlantic Self Storage. All fans who donate to Wolfson’s Children Hospital will be entered to win a $25 Icemen merchandise gift card.
Tickets are still available for Saturday. Fans can click here to buy theirs today!