Saturday, December 11, 2010

Gameday Preview: Stars at Milwaukee Admirals

Texas Stars
15-9-1-1, 32 pts
#6 West Division
atMilwaukee Admirals
14-8-1-4, 33 pts
#4 West Division
December 11th at 7:30 PM
Bradley Center, Milwaukee, WI

Texas heads to the Bradley center for the first time this season. The Stars visited downtown Milwaukee four times last year, splitting their contests 2-2-0-0. Milwaukee and Texas have played twice in 2010-11, both in Texas, also splitting those games.

In each of this season's games, one of the two goaltenders has gotten a shutout. Richard Bachman got his first on a 2-0 win on November 20th while Mark Dekanich took his turn on November 26th in a 1-0 victory. This evening's game is unlikely to feature a goose-egg on either side of the scoresheet.

With an injuries to Kari Lehtonen (Dallas) and Pekka Rinne (Nashville), neither will figure in this evening's battle. While Dex's numbers were outstanding, his backups have only played a combined 7 games and most of them have come since the December 3rd call up. Chet Pickard (1-3-1, 2.95 GAA, .895 SV%) and Jeremy Smith (3-3-0, 3.86 GAA, .878 SV%) have allowed 15 goals in four games of work since Dekanich left for the Predators.

Meanwhile, Texas is suffering from similar woes, only a little bit for dire. Both of the original goaltenders from the start of year at Texas are out of the lineup (Krahn with an injury and Bachman in Dallas). This has left Tyler Beskorowany and Adrien LeMay to man the pipes. Beskorowany (1-2-0, 4.34 GAA, .886 SV%) just garnered his first win in the AHL last night against Grand Rapids. Meanwhile Adrien LeMay has yet to record a minute of play in the AHL but is 8-1-1 in the CHL this year.

Milwaukee has more road wins (9) than they have played homes games total (8), a favor that is repaid by the AHL scheduling carousel at the end of the season. Milwaukee will play 13 of their last 18 games at home. Right now, the team is surely looking to continue their home success (5-1-1-1) to earn important points in the mid-season.

The only Admiral to score against the Stars this season is Steve Begin. Last year's top four scorers against the Stars are all elsewhere this season. The same is true for the Stars however. Aaron Gagnon is the only player in the top 5 to dress for Texas this season, but he is currently doing very well in Dallas for the big club. Someone else will have to step up for the Stars in addition to Rallo and Sawada, this year's goal scorers, to keep things going in the right direction for Texas tonight.

Stars injury/call up report:
Krahn (lower body)
McCulloch (upper body)
Bachman, Gagnon, Fortunus (callup)

Admirals Web Resources:
Website: milwaukeeadmirals.com
Blog (Official): In The Crease
Blog (Unofficial): Admirals Roundtable (@adsroundtable)
Twitter: @mkeadmirals

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