Ice Chips

By Corine Gatti

Ice Chips:

Admirals’ rookie net-minder Michael Leighton rebounded from a disappointing exhibition appearance in Philadelphia
a week ago which he allowed the Phantoms to score 3 goals against him. Leighton displayed his natural talent
between the pipes turning aside 25 of 26 Springfield shots, he did not look the least beat nervous or shaken as he was appearing in his first professional game.

Last Sunday’s trade of Marty Wilford to the Toronto Maple Leafs left a vacancy in the assistant captain role.
Matt Henderson (LW),Rumun Ndur (D), and Casey Hanknison (RW) each wore an “A” on their sweaters respectfully.
Their is a vacancy for captian as former team captain Aaron Downey is now wearing a Chicago Blackhawks sweater.

It is speculated that Ajay Baines (Center) will take over that role. Baines had a breakout year last season with the Admirals playing
in 73 regular season contests -netting 18 goals, recording 18 assists for an impresive +14 he also spent 92 minutes in the sin bin.
For his achievements on and off the ice Ajay was rewarded with AON/AHL Man of Year Honors

Casey Hankinson, is still recovering from a puck that deflected off his right hand in training camp with the Chicago Blackhawks, he has the injury wrapped up and protected but isn’t expected to miss any ice time.

Rookie’s take center stage:

Goalie Michael Leighton made his first professional debut and it was a memorable one as he picked up his first win in the AHL.
Allowing only 1 goal on 26 Springfield shots. The twenty year old played last season in the OHL (Windsor) and recorded a career-low 2.73 goals
against average. Also backing up Leighton was Craig Andersson who has spent his last 3 seasons in the OHL ( Guelph ), Andersson who is also a twenty year old rookie captured Goaltender of the Year honors in 00-01, is expected to make his professional debut
Saturday night at home against the Springfield Falcons.

Information on this article was provided by:

Norfolk Admiral Correspondents: Brad Johnson and Corine Gatti