01/12/2014 5:51 PM
The Springfield Falcons (25-8-1-3) were defeated by the Norfolk Admirals by the final score of 2-1 Sunday afternoon at the MassMutual Center, dropping their third straight game in regulation for the first time this season.
Jesse Blacker scored the game-winning goals for Norfolk with a wrist shot from the left-wing circle that found the back of the net at 3:51 of the second period. Devante Smith-Pelly scored the first Admirals tally at the 3:26 mark of the first period, giving Norfolk a 1-0 lead.
Dalton Smith scored the lone Falcons goal, burying a rebound in front past Norfolk netminder Frederik Andersen at 9:52 of the opening frame. For Smith, the goal was his fourth of the season and first since December 7.
Jeremy Smith made 26 saves on 28 shots in net for Springfield, falling for the second consecutive start for the first time since December 4. Smith is now 16-6-2 this season.
Andersen stopped 25 of 26 shots to improve to 3-1-0 this season.
The Falcons went 0-for-4 on the power play, while allowing one score on six Norfolk opportunities with the man advantage. The goal was the team’s first power-play goal allowed in seven games, with the last one coming December 29 versus the Providence Bruins.
Despite the loss, the Falcons remain atop the Northeast Division with 54 points, two points shy of the Eastern Conference-leading Manchester Monarchs. Springfield has four games in hand on Manchester.
The Falcons look to get back in the win column Friday, January 17 when they visit the Portland Pirates in Lewiston, Maine. The team returns to action at the MassMutual Center Saturday, January 18 to host the Providence Bruins at 7:00 p.m.