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Coachella Valley Holds off Milwaukee in Pivotal Game Five Victory

The Firebirds defeated the Milwaukee Admirals in game five of the Western Conference Finals by the final score of 2-1. Brogan Rafferty and Max McCormick each scored for the Firebirds to help Coachella Valley take a 3-2 series lead with game six set to take place this Monday at Acrisure Arena.

For the first time in the series, Milwaukee opened the scoring. Kiefer Sherwood netted a powerplay goal at 12:03 of the first period to give the Admirals a 1-0 lead. Coachella Valley had to fight off a total of four Milwaukee powerplays in the first 20 minutes.

The Firebirds tied the game early in the second period on the first AHL postseason goal for Brogan Rafferty. Rafferty, who had plenty of friends and family in attendance, poked the puck to himself in the offensive zone and made a quick move to beat Devin Cooley. Andrew Poturalski and Cameron Hughes earned the assists at 1:22 of period two.

Max McCormick, the Wisconsin native, gave the Firebirds a 2-1 lead at 16:43. Alexander True and Kole Lind cycled the puck behind the net where Lind fed McCormick at the front of the cage to give Coachella Valley their first and only lead of the game.

Coachella Valley shutdown the Milwaukee offense in the third period, including killing a penalty in the final five minutes and staving off a 6-on-5 for the Admirals after they pulled their netminder.

Joey Daccord made 25 saves in the Firebirds’ victory. Coachella Valley’s powerplay finished 0-for-4 and the penalty kill went 4-for-5.

Read the game’s full box score HERE.

The Firebirds will have a chance to close out the series this Monday for game six of the Western Conference at Acrisure Arena. Puck drop is set for 7pm PT.

Tickets are available for game six and, if necessary, game seven of the Western Conference Finals. Fans are encouraged to wear white to all Round 4 home games and arrive early to cheer on the home team at Acrisure Arena! Tickets are on sale now with individual tickets starting at just $29 and group tickets (10 or more people) beginning at $25. Visit to purchase and learn more information.

Stay up to date on the latest Firebirds’ news and info by visiting and by following the team on social media @Firebirds.

Season tickets for the Firebirds’ 2023-24 campaign are on sale now! For a full list of benefits and more information on Season Ticket Memberships for the 2023-24 season, click HERE or call 760-835-8778

2023 Calder cup playoffs