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Brahmas To Close Regular Season Against Icerays

Photo courtesy of Rebekah Bing Photography: Jon Russell and Steven Ipri celebrate Ipri's game tying goal against the Icerays on Feb 8 at the American Bank Center in Corpus Christi. The Lone Star Brahmas went on to win the game 4-3 on a goal from Kyle Hallbauer.

 

The Lone Star Brahmas will hit the road again this week making on a trek to the Coastal Bend to close out the regular season against the Corpus Christi Icerays at the American Bank Center. This weekend will set the tone for both teams entering the playoffs. The Brahmas have the chance to top 85 points on the season for the fourth straight year. Corpus Christi has never reached the 85 point level since joining the NAHL in the 2010/11 season.

Lone Star and Corpus Christi have played 10 times this season and have been fairly evenly matched over the course of the campaign. The Brahmas hold a 5-3-2-0 record in the season series outscoring the Icerays 29-25 in the process.

 

10/20     Icerays 2 at Brahmas 4

10/21     Icerays 1 at Brahmas 5

11/17     Brahmas 2 at Icerays 4

11/18    Brahmas 4 at Icerays 3 SO

12/8       Icerays 2 at Brahmas 1 OT

12/9       Icerays 3 at Brahmas 1

01/05     Icerays 4 at Brahmas 3 OT

01/06     Icerays 1 at Brahmas 5

02/08     Brahmas 4 at Icerays 3

02/09     Brahmas 0 at Icerays 3

 

Lone Star is coming off an extended three game weekend playing in Shreveport on Friday and Saturday followed by a home game against Topeka on Monday. On Friday night the game was scoreless through regulation with Mitchell Gibson (25W-7L-5OTL-4SOL) making 31 saves through 60 minutes of play. Unfortunately, he had a puck bounce off his blocker for the game winner just 19 seconds into overtime. Saturday was looking like it was going to be another disappointing outcome when Ture Linden (14G-30A) scored to tie it at 1-1 with just seven seconds left in regulation. After a scoreless overtime, Kimball Johnson (5G-7A) took the puck as the first shooter in the shootout and scoring five hole. Harrison Feeney (11W-3L-1OTL-0SOL) made that one goal stand up stopping all three of the Shreveport shooters. On Monday Topeka jumped on top early, but the lead was short lived. Jon Russell (31G-17A) knotted it at 1-1 just under three minutes after the RoadRunners took the lead with Frankie Trazzera (4G-6A) adding the eventual game winner on the power play with 3:16 left in the opening period. Brahmas’ 2018 Tender Jake Suede (2G-0A) got in on the action as well potting a second period goal then following that up with a power play tally in the third. Gibson picked up the win making 23 saves.

Corpus Christi was at home against the Odessa Jackalopes over the weekend hoping for a sweep of Odessa to pull within one point of the third place Jackalopes with two games left to play. The Icerays took care of business in game one although they had to work for the win. Kaelan Taylor (2G-7A) scored the first goal of the game just past the midpoint of the opening period, but Odessa tied it up before intermission. Angus Scott (7G-15A) would give the lead back to Corpus Christi early in the second only to see Odessa tie it up three minutes later. The Icerays reeled off the next three goals from Jayson Dimizio (12G-11A), Garrett Hallford (14G-20A) and Brendan Miller (22G-19A) to take a three goal lead into the third. Odessa scored twice in the third on either side of a Grayson Gavin (3G-9A) tally to make it interesting. Chad Veltri (21W-13L-1OTL-2SOL) picked up the win on 24 saves. The Icerays saw their longshot chance to grab third place in the South evaporate in game two as the Jackalopes scored three in the second period to take a 3-0 win. Veltri was in goal once again this time taking the loss on 30 saves.

 

Last 5 games

W L OTL SOL Pts
Brahmas 4 0 1 0 9
Icerays 4 1 0 0 8

Special Teams

The Brahmas power play remains at number 9 overall for the third series in a row. They come in having scored 48 times on 225 power plays or 21.3%. On the road they are tied for 17th in the league at 16.7% on 17 goals in 102 opportunities. Over their last five games they have 3 goals in 15 opportunities or an even 20.0%. The only team ahead of Lone Star on the penalty kill is Shreveport. The Brahmas have allowed 31 goals on 216 penalty kills good for 85.6%. The road unit falls one place in the standings, but the percentage climbs to an even 87.0% after allowing 13 goals on 100 opponent power plays. In their last five games the Brahmas penalty kill is an outstanding 91.7% allowing just one goal on 12 kills.

The Icerays’ power play is dead last in the 23 team league at just 12.7% scoring 30 times on 236 opportunities. They are slightly better at home moving up three spots to 20th and 15.1% on 16 goals in 106 power plays. They have shown some life as of late scoring 5 time in 21 power plays over their last five games or 23.8%. Corpus Christi’s penalty kill is in the top half of the league at 8th overall and 82.8%. They have killed off 176 of 214 opponent power plays. They slip slightly at home down to 80.6% allowing 19 goals in 98 kills good for 13th in the league. The last five games they have performed inline with their season average at 83.3% allowing 3 goals on 18 kills.

Head-to-head the Brahmas hold the upper hand on special teams despite the fact that Corpus Christi has had nearly twice as many power play opportunities over the 10 games played. Lone Star in 6 of 17 with the man advantage or 35.3% compared to the Icerays who are 3 of 30 or 10.0%.

 

Goaltending Comparison (Last 5 Games)

W L OTL SOL SO GA GAA SV SV%
Brahmas 4 0 1 0 1 5 0.97 125 0.962
Icerays 4 1 0 0 0 13 2.56 179 0.932

 

Who is Hot (Last 5 Games)

Brahmas G A Pts
Austin Bottrell 2 5 7
Jon Russell 3 2 5
Ture Linden 1 2 3
Drew Lennon 0 3 3
Two Tied at 2 0 2
Icerays G A Pts
Rylee St. Onge 2 5 7
Adam Kadlec 0 6 6
Conor Yawney 0 6 6
Brendan Miller 4 1 5
Garrett Hallford 2 3 5

 

Inside the Game

  • The Brahmas come into the series on a 13 game point streak going 12-0-1-0 over that stretch. Their point streak is the longest current streak in the NAHL.
  • The Icerays are 5-5-0-0 in their last 10 games.
  • Jon Russell and Rylee St. Onge (20G-28A) are currently tied for 19th in the league in scoring.
  • Jon Russell is tied for 2nd in goals scored, one behind the leader. Larry Jungwirth (25G-21A) is currently setting in 6th and Brendan Miller is 19th.
  • Jon Russell is also 2nd in power play goals with 15, once again one behind the leader. Steven Ipri (17G-27A) and Larry Jungwirth are tied for 14th with 8 apiece.
  • With 15 power play assists Ture Linden is tied for 8th in the league while Steven Ipri is tied for 11th with 14.
  • Jon Russell is tied for the league lead in game winning goals with 6. Ture Linden and Aidan Spellacy (12G-15A) are tied for 5th with 5 each.
  • Kyle Hallbauer (7G-25A) is 10th with a +27 rating on the season. Justin Addamo is tied for 13th with a +24.
  • Brendan Miller is tied for the league lead in shorthanded goals with 5.
  • Brendan Miller is setting 4th in the league in penalty minutes with 157 just four ahead of Frankie Trazzera in 5th with 153. Jayson DImizio is also in the top 10 at 8th with 135 minutes.
  • Mitchell Gibson has solidified his spot as the top qualified goalie in the league with a goals against average of 1.63. Chad Veltri comes in 11th with a 2.34 GAA. Harrison Feeney has a 1.54 GAA and Jake Acton (5W-6L-1OTL-3SOL) has a 3.29 GAA, but has not played since March 2nd. Neither Feeney nor Acton have the required minutes to qualify among league leaders.
  • Mitchell Gibson also leads the league in save percentage with a 0.934 SV%. Chad Veltri is one spot behind Gibson in 2nd with a 0.929 SV%. Harrison Feeney has a 0.927 SV% and Jake Acton has a 0.908 SV%.
  • With 10 shutouts on the season, Mitchell Gibson has far outpaced the rest of the pack and is 5 shutouts ahead of the next nearest goaltender.
  • Mitchell Gibson is 2nd in the league with 25 wins and Chad Veltri is 4th with 21.
  • The Icerays are averaging 22.07 penalty minutes per game which is 2nd highest in the NAHL. The Brahmas come in at 12th averaging 15.43 penalty minutes per game. Corpus Christi has been whistled for 42 more minor penalties than Lone Star.
  • The Brahmas are 13-7-3-3 away from NYTEX Sports Centre while the Icerays are 13-11-2-2 on home ice.
  • Corpus Christi has fared much better in games extending beyond regulation. The Icerays have won 9 of their 17 games that went to overtime or a shootout compared to just 5 of 15 for the Brahmas.
  • The Brahmas have a +51 goal differential on the season outscoring their opponents 159 – 108. The Icerays on the other hand are at a -15 having been outscored 172 – 157.
  • Lone Star has the 15th ranked offense in the league averaging 2.74 goals per game and the 2nd ranked defense allowing just 1.86 goals against per game. Corpus Christi’s offense is tied for 18th averaging 2.71 goals per game and their defense is 12th allowing 2.97 goals per game.
  • Corpus Christi is 25-5-2-4 when leading or tied after two periods. Lone Star is 33-2-4-3 in the same circumstances.

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