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NAHL South Div Playoff Picture

 

The NAHL Robertson Cup Playoffs will kick off this weekend for 14 of the 16 playoff qualifiers. Round One will be a best of five series with winners moving on to best of five Division Championship Series. The four division winners will then meet at Fogerty Arena in Blaine, MN for the Robertson Cup National Championship. The four teams will be seeded 1-4 based upon their finish in the NAHL regular-season standings. The #1 Seed will face the #4 seed and the #2 seed will face the #3 seed in a best of three series. The two series winners will advance on to a one-game playoff to determine the Robertson Cup Champion on May 14th.

 

South Division Pairings

#1 Shreveport vs #4 Corpus Christi

In a repeat of last season’s first round playoff match the Shreveport Mudbugs and Corpus Christi Icerays will open play at Hirsch Coliseum. Shreveport entered that playoff series as the favorite only to see Corpus Christi sweep them into the offseason in three games.

The Mudbugs will once again enter the first round as the favorite, but if recent play is any indication they may once again be in for a battle.

The Mudbugs hold a 6-3-1-2 record in the season series and have outscored the Icerays 39-29 in the process. However, Corpus Christi has won the last three contests with two of those games played in Shreveport.

Four of the 12 head-to-head matchups have been decided in a shootout this season and one in overtime.

Shreveport who ran out to a large lead in the standings early on their way to the South Division crown have struggled of late. Karlis Zirnas has seen his team go 5-3-0-2 in their last 10 games with all but two coming against South Division playoff teams. Even more concerning for the Mudbugs is the fact that they are 1-3-0-1 over their last five heading into the playoffs. With 15 games left to play in the season Shreveport held a 14 point lead over the second place Lone Star Brahmas and held on to win the division by just three points.

The Mudbugs power play finished the season ranked 15th in the league at 18.5% by far the lowest percentage of the four division winners. However, their penalty kill was stellar all season and finished atop the league rankings at 86.4%. Shreveport was 8 – 58 against Corpus Christi during the regular season on the power play.

Corpus Christi also has a 5-3-2-0 in their last ten contests including a sweep of the Mudbugs in Shreveport. Six of those 10 games were against playoff teams while they split the other four with the Amarillo Bulls. The Icerays had points in four of their last five games with a 2-1-2-0 record all against playoff teams.

The Icerays limp into the playoffs with the worst power play in the NAHL at only 12.3%. Playing against Shreveport’s penalty kill, Corpus Christi will be hard pressed to find any points with the man advantage. The Icerays penalty kill is a respectable 82.3% good for 9th in the league. Despite the vast differences in the Corpus Christi power play numbers compared to the Shreveport penalty kill numbers, the Icerays managed to go 6 – 56 against the Mudbugs on the power play during the regular season.

 

Head-to-Head Performance

 

Shreveport   Corpus Christi
Name GP G A PIM + / – Name GP G A PIM + / –
Cameron Cook 12 3 7 29 -3 Rylee St. Onge 12 6 6 20 -5
Brendan Gysbers 12 2 8 2 -1 Larry Jungwirth 12 5 3 6 E
Dominick Procopio 12 0 9 12 -1 Brendan Miller 10 4 4 80 2
Brendan VanSweden 12 3 6 16 4 Matt Acciaiaol 12 2 5 28 -3
Jordan Fader 12 3 5 29 8 Adam Kadlec 3 0 6 0 -3
Cole Quisenberry 12 4 3 8 6 Conor Yawney 12 0 6 4 1
Jake Transit 12 3 4 2 E Blake Coffey 12 1 4 16 -3
Jack Clement 9 4 2 2 1 Jayson Dimizio 12 4 0 31 E
Andrew Lane 12 0 6 21 8 Garrett Hallford 12 1 3 17 1
Kieran Durgan 7 2 3 8 2 Julian Makary 8 0 2 2 E
Roberts Baranovskis 12 1 3 0 4 Matt Novo 12 1 1 6 -5
Ryan Burnett 11 3 1 22 2 Noah Roofe 10 1 1 2 -3
Gueorgui Feduolov 12 2 2 38 -4 Ryan Rosenberg 7 1 1 23 1
Derek Contessa 8 0 3 2 5 Angus Scott 12 0 2 21 -6
Nikolai Jenson 8 1 2 0 E Trevor Wilhelm 12 0 2 4 1
Jay Feiwell 9 1 1 14 -1 Dakota Concannon 5 0 0 0 -2
Jacob Holmers 8 2 0 4 E AJ DiCesare 4 0 0 0 -2
Jacob Skolnik 9 0 2 0 5 Gavin Grayson 3 0 0 2 -2
Jonathan Asplund 3 1 0 0 1 Pavel Koreshokov 6 0 0 0 -3
Jack Jaunich 7 1 0 0 -1 Kaelan Taylor 11 0 0 6 -8
Warren Natyshak 4 0 1 0 -1 Bud Winter 7 0 0 0 -3
Name Record GA GAA SVS SV% Name Record GA GAA SVS SV%
Gustavs Gringals 2-1-0-0 11 3.57 68 0.867 Jake Acton 2-2-0-2 19 3.05 194 0.910
Jaxon Castor 0-2-0-1 7 2.30 67 0.905 Chad Veltri 4-1-0-0 11 2.13 189 0.964

Schedule

Game 1    04/13 7:11 PM          Corpus Christi at Shreveport

Game 2     04/14 7:11 PM          Corpus Christi at Shreveport

Game 3     04/19 7:05 PM          Shreveport at Corpus Christi

Game 4     04/20 6:30 PM          Shreveport at Corpus Christi (If Necessary)

Game 5     04/22 7:11 PM          Corpus Christi at Shreveport (If Necessary)

 

#2 Lone Star vs #3 Odessa

In the second NAHL South Division opening round matchup the Lone Star Brahmas and Odessa Jackalopes will play a best of five series with the Brahmas having home ice advantage.

The Brahmas held a 7-1-0-0 record against the Jackalopes in the regular season series with the one loss coming at NYTEX Sports Centre on Dec 1 by a 5-1 score. Lone Star outscored Odessa 26-18 in the eight games played. Two games went to overtime and the last three contests were all one goal games with the Brahmas winning each 4-3.

Lone Star got off to a slow start offensively putting them in a hole early in the season. In the first half the Brahmas put up a 16-9-3-2 record with an 11 point goal differential outscoring their opponents 71-60 in the 30 games played. Once the calendar rolled over to 2018 things started looking up for Lone Star. The offense kicked it in gear and the defense became even more stingy as the goal differential grew to a +42 with the Brahmas outscoring opponents 93-51. The results showed in the record as well with Lone Star going 22-3-3-2 in the second half. Lone Star was 18 points behind Shreveport going into play on March 2. That is when the Brahmas started a 15 game point streak cutting the deficit in the division to just three points at the close of the season.

The Brahmas’ power play comes in ranked 9th in the league at 21.2%. Considering where they were early in the season that is an impressive number. The penalty kill was strong all season and finished 3rd at 86.1%. Against Odessa this season the Brahmas were 9 – 36 on the power play.

Odessa was on an even keel for most of the season. They went from a 16-11-2-1 record in the first half to an 17-11-1-1 mark in the second half. While they saw their offensive output go from 89 goals in the first half to 103 in the second half and their defense allowed just one more goal the improvement did not playout in their record or the standings.  The Jackalopes won five of their last six games including a split with Corpus Christi and a sweep of Shreveport. With the final weekend of the regular season off, Odessa has not played since March 24, so they will need to knock the rust off quickly against Lone Star.

Odessa’s power play finished in the bottom half of the league at 13th with an even 19.0%. As with the rest of the South Division playoff qualifiers their penalty kill was a strong point for the team setting 5th in the NAHL at 84.7%. In the season series against Lone Star, Odessa went 7 – 35 in their power play opportunities.

 

Head-to-Head Performance

 

Skater GP G A PIM +/- Skater GP G A PIM +/-
Julian Biondo 6 0 7 19 3 Blake Bride 6 4 2 6 2
Kyle Hallbauer 8 2 5 17 6 Peyton Frantti 8 2 1 6 -5
Ture Linden 8 3 4 4 2 James Crossman 8 1 4 6 0
Jon Russell 7 3 4 5 3 Nick Wilson 8 1 1 31 -1
Aidan Spellacy 8 3 4 4 4 Zac Herrmann 8 0 3 17 -4
Justin Addamo 6 4 2 8 3 Eric Huss 7 1 1 2 2
Steven Ipri 6 2 4 14 3 Dylan Johnson 7 1 0 6 -1
Austin Bottrell 4 1 4 2 4 Noah Poindexter 8 0 1 4 0
Emack Bentley 5 1 2 2 -1 Zach Heintz 6 1 4 2 -1
Kimball Johnson 7 1 2 4 2 Petr Miko 5 2 5 0 3
Connor Stuart 7 0 3 8 0 Lucas Andersson 6 0 0 29 -2
Michael Montambault 6 1 1 2 0 Viktor Johansson 4 2 2 0 -1
Connor Pooley 8 0 2 0 0 Rune Kirby 6 0 0 0 0
Jakub Sirota 4 0 2 2 1 Evan Somoza 6 0 2 6 -2
Frankie Trazzera 8 1 1 21 -1 Nick McKeeby 5 0 0 2 -3
Trevor Zenas 5 0 2 0 1 Matt Brown 4 0 5 4 0
Owen Farris 8 1 0 6 -1 Ricky Carballo 4 0 1 16 -5
Drew Lennon 8 1 0 6 2 Jared Christy 2 1 1 0 0
Chase Pletzke 5 0 1 2 -1 Erik Nilsson 2 0 0 0 0
Wyatt Mathews 5 0 0 4 -3 Martin Pietraszek 2 0 0 0 0
Anton Sandberg 6 0 0 8 -3
Name Record GA GAA SVS SV% Name Record GA GAA SVS SV%
Harrison Feeney 1-0-0-0 2 1.38 36 0.947 Brett Epp 0-3-2-0 15 3.37 97 0.866
Mitchell Gibson 6-1-0-0 16 2.4 174 0.916 Alex Camarre 1-2-0-0 11 3.03 99 0.900

Schedule

Game 1    04/13 7:30 PM          Odessa at Lone Star

Game 2     04/14 7:30 PM          Odessa at Lone Star

Game 3     04/20 7:11 PM          Lone Star at Odessa

Game 4     04/21 7:11 PM          Lone Star at Odessa (If Necessary)

Game 5     04/23 7:00 PM          Odessa at Lone Star (If Necessary)

 

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