ALBANY, N.Y. – Brad Mills scored twice as the Albany Devils gained a two-game lead in their quest for the Time Warner Cable Cup with a 6-2 victory against the Adirondack Phantoms Tuesday at the Times Union Center. The team jumped out to a three-goal advantage within the first five minutes to improve to 6-3-0-1 against Adirondack.
“I think anytime you go up that much that early you get a psychological edge,” Mills said.
Mills scored his 13th and 14th goals of the season and moved his total to four in the last three games. Sharing in the night’s success was Ryan Ginand, who had a goal and two assists in only his second career AHL contest. Matt Anderson and Chris Murray each registered two assists.
Other goal scorers for the Devils included Adam Henrique, Joe Sova and Nathan Perkovich. All three tallies came on the power play.
Jeff Frazee earned his 11th victory by making 33 saves on 35 shots. It was his first win since returning to the lineup on Mar. 25 after missing eight games.
“It took me a little while to get my feet underneath me,” Frazee said. “Once I did I felt comfortable and I thought like I was moving well.”
Ginand, who was signed to a PTO on Mar. 27, scored his second goal since coming from Trenton (ECHL). He opened the scoring in the game by deflecting Murray’s shot from the point 29 seconds into the outing.
Minutes later, Ginand found Mills for a one-touch goal atop the crease at 3:55 and Perkovich had the second assist.
The Devils kept the pressure on and Henrique netted his team-leading 24th goal thanks to a sneaky pass by Alexander Vasyunov. The goal, which was also assisted on by Anderson, came at 4:54 while Albany worked the man advantage.
After Matt Read made it 3-1, Sova regained the three-goal advantage with a blast from the point at 17:06 of the second period on the power play. The tally was the first of his four-game AHL career and the helpers went to Vasyunov and Anderson.
Adirondack kept pestering and pulled within two with a breakaway goal by Harry Zolnierczyk at 3:50 of the same period.
In the third, Mills scored by banking the puck off goaltender Johan Backlund’s body 25 seconds into the frame and Perkovich tipped a blast by Alexander Urbom at 12:28.
Johan Backlund was in goal for the Phantoms; he had 28 stops on 34 shots.
Next up, these two teams meet again on Friday, Apr. 1 with a 7:30 p.m. contest at Adirondack. That game can be heard on 104.5 FM “The Team” ESPN Radio or online at AHLLive.com.