Michael Russo has covered the National Hockey League since 1995. He has covered the Minnesota Wild for the Star Tribune since 2005, after 10 years of covering the Florida Panthers for the Sun-Sentinel. He uses “Russo’s Rants” to feed a wide-ranging hockey-centric discussion with readers, and can be heard weekly on KFAN (100.3 FM) radio and seen weekly on Fox Sports North.

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Aeros loss leaves them down 2-1 to Milwaukee

Posted by: Michael Russo under Wild off-season news Updated: May 3, 2011 - 11:07 PM

Here's a cut and paste from the Aeros. Nashville and Vancouver game is in OT, so, um, bye:

HOUSTON --- The Houston Aeros scored twice on the power play and staged a third period rally but the Milwaukee Admirals took a 2-1 series advantage in Game 3 of the American Hockey League’s West Division Finals with a 5-3 victory over the host Aeros on Tuesday night at Toyota Center.

Steve Begin scored the deciding goal with 9:35 gone in the third period and added two helpers for the Admirals. Ryan Thang, Andreas Thuresson and Mike Bartlett each delivered a goal and an assist for Milwaukee. The Ads were backstopped by Jeremy Smith’s 31 saves.

Houston’s Robbie Earl notched three assists, one shy of a team playoff record, and goaltender Matt Hackett made 20 saves in the loss. The Aeros penalty kill stopped all five Milwaukee chances and has erased all 16 opportunities in the series.

Jarod Spurgeon’s first playoff goal at 8:15 of the first period put the Aeros up 1-0, but the Admirals answered with goals by Mark Van Guilder, Thang and Thuresson to build a 3-1 advantage by the 13:58 mark of the middle stanza.

Marco Scandella’s power play tally at 8:16 of the third period pulled Houston within a goal, but Begin regained the two-goal Milwaukee advantage 1:19 later.

The Aeros pressed and again pulled within a goal on Jarod Palmer’s tally 33 seconds later. Palmer’s second of the postseason was initially waived off and play continued. After officials discussed the play at the next whistle it was ruled a goal.

Bartlett struck just 27 seconds after Palmer’s goal and the Admirals held on for the win.

The 2-3-2 series resumes at Toyota Center with Game 4 on Thursday at 7:05 p.m. and Game 5 on Friday at 7:35 p.m.

Aeros tickets are available via aeros.com, the Toyota Center Box Office, by calling 1-866-GO-AEROS and at select area Randalls locations. For groups or packages, please call 713-974-PUCK.

The Aeros had allowed only one third period goal entering tonight’s game… Houston scored first for the second game in a row and now has an all-time Calder Cup record of 34-10… When a Calder Cup Playoff series is tied 1-1, the Aeros are now 3-7 in Game 3… When trailing 2-1 in a best-of-seven Calder Cup Playoff series, the Aeros are 2-3 in Game 4 and 2-3 in the series… The only team to trail 2-1 in a series and come back to win the series was the 2003 Calder Cup Championship team. That club did it twice, once in the Western Conference Semifinals and once in the Calder Cup Finals.

F – Gillies, Ortmeyer, Peters
D – Spurgeon, Bagnall
G - Hackett

Fraser, Penner, Lofquist, Foucault, Campbell, Fredheim, Morency, Buck, Kassian, Broda, Cuma, Daoust

West Division Finals, Game 4
Thursday, May 5 (7:05 p.m.)
Toyota Center

Begin (9:35, 3rd)

HOU: 2/4
MIL: 0/5

HOU: Hackett (20/25, L)
MIL: Smith (31/34, W)

MIL leads 2-1


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