Moose one victory away from series win after OT triumph


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The Manitoba Moose are poised to advance in the American Hockey League playoffs.

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The Manitoba Moose are poised to advance in the American Hockey League playoffs.

Wyatt Bongiovanni ripped the winning goal 4:53 into overtime with the Moose on the power play for a 3-2 victory over the host Milwaukee Admirals on Wednesday night.

Manitoba, the affiliate of the Winnipeg Jets, leads the best-of-five opening round series 2-1 and has two chances to end it in Milwaukee. The Admirals host Game 4 on Friday at 7 p.m., with a fifth game (if necessary) to be staged Saturday night.

Milwaukee Admirals photo

Manitoba Moose left-winger Jeff Malott takes a shot Wednesday against the Admirals in Milwaukee.

Bongiovanni’s timely tally was Manitoba’s first goal in 10 tries with the man advantage in the series. Jordan Gross had been called for high-sticking at 3:16.

“It’s awesome. I think a lot of guys deserved to have that overtime winner and that feeling,” said the 23-year-old forward. “Overall, it’s just a great team win and I’m happy to finish that off for us.”

It was Manitoba’s second straight OT win in the series. The team hadn’t participated in overtime in the playoffs since 2014, prior to Sunday’s 3-2 triumph in downtown Winnipeg. That night, Jansen Harkins scored just 1:32 into extra time.

Jeff Malott, who scored his first goal of the playoffs in the second period Wednesday, clanked a couple of posts in the third, including a near miss with less than 20 seconds left on the clock.

Moose forward Alex Limoges opened the scoring just 2:49 into the contest with his first tally of the series, an absolute beauty on a breakaway on Admirals netminder Yaroslav Askarov with the clubs playing four on four.

But Luke Evangelista of Milwaukee tied it up with less than four minutes left in the initial frame.

Malott jammed in the go-ahead goal at the 9:57 mark of the second period.

Kevin Gravel evened the game 2-2 for the hosts at 6:10 of the third period on a goal-mouth scramble. Moose goalie Oskari Salminen had tried to corral the puck without his stick after losing it in the commotion just above his crease.

Salminen finished the night with 24 saves.

— staff

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