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Brahmas Drop 3-2 Game For Split With Icerays

Photo courtesy of Rebekah Bing Photography: Matt Guerra scored twice against the Corpus Christi Icerays, but the Lone Star Brahmas came up just short losing 3-2 and coming away with a split of their weekend series.

 

The Lone Star Brahmas and Corpus Christi Icerays wrapped up their weekend series Saturday night. Lone Star had picked up a 3-1 win in game one to jump over the Icerays in the NAHL South Division standings into a tie for fourth with the Odessa Jackalopes. A win Saturday and the Brahmas would take sole possession of fourth and potentially move into third depending on the outcome of the Amarillo – Shreveport contest.

3:01 into the first the Icerays took their first lead of the weekend. Noah Roofe sent the puck to the far halfwall for Blake Bennett who found Bud Winter cruising toward the left hashmarks and he beat Harrison Feeney five hole for the early goal.

Lone Star was not going to let Corpus Christi hold onto the lead for long and build momentum. Just moments after an Iceray’s penalty kill had expired, Jake Suede cut off a clearing attempt and Blake Evennou picked up the loose puck in the high slot. Evennou moved it to Matt Guerra in the rightwing circle. Guerra drove to the net and totally undressed Sam Best with a stick move then tucked the puck around the down and out netminder. Time of the goal was 5:59.

Much of the middle frame was a back and forth affair with little in the way of scoring opportunities. The big exception came with right at six minutes left in the period. Corpus Christi’s Nick Godfrey got behind the defense and went streaking in toward the Brahmas’ goal. Feeney came out to challenge and made a big stop on the breakaway to keep the score knotted at 1-1.

The Brahmas took the lead at 3:33 of the third on Guerra’s second of the contest. Guerra had carried the puck across the blueline and tried to feed it to Vilho Saariluoma who was joining him on the rush, but the pass went off an Icerays skate. Guerra stayed with the play, recovered the puck skated it to the far hash mark and ripped it top shelf. Evennou and Kimball Johnson picked up the assists on the play.

For the second time in the game an Icerays forward got behind the Lone Star defense on a lone man rush. This time it was Kyle Moore who went in on Feeney all alone. Moore made a move to the forehand and Feeney tracked it the entire way kicking it aside with the left pad.

At the 9:47 mark Winter matched Guerra with his second of the night. He took a pass from Brady Bjork just outside the blueline then fired a shot on goal. Feeney got most of it, but not all as it bounced through and across the line to tie the score at 2-2. Coltan Wilkie logged the secondary assist. Just 47 seconds later Wilkie sent Moore racing up the ice in front of the benches. As Moore hit the near faceoff dot he fired a pass across ice to Blake Bennett streaking in on the backdoor for a redirect into the open net.

Lone Star pulled Feeney with just under a minute left to play, but could not find the equalizer falling 3-2 and leaving Corpus Christi with a split in the series.

The Icerays outshot the Brahmas 31-22 and both teams were scoreless on the power play with Lone Star 0-2 and Corpus Christi 0-1. The loss moved the Brahmas back into last place in the South Division, but they are just five points behind third place Shreveport. One bright spot for Lone Star is that for the first time this season the Brahmas scored more than one goal on back to back nights.

Boxscore

 

Elsewhere Around the NAHL South Division

Amarillo at Shreveport

The Mudbugs won a special teams extravaganza with five of the eight goals scored through 60 minutes of play coming on the power play or shorthanded. After the Bulls took a two goal lead early in the second on two power play goals, Warren Natyshak scored a power play goal for Shreveport then Jack Johnson connected shorthanded. Amarillo scored again on the man advantage before the first even strength goal by Grant Bondy. The teams traded goals in the third with Johnson picking up his second just 27 seconds after the Bulls had taken the lead. The game eventually went to a shootout where Billy Feczko potted the game winner. Leo Chuard made 49 saves in the win.

Current NAHL South Division Standings

Team GP W L OTL SOL PTS
Amarillo Bulls 10 7 2 1 0 15
Topeka Pilots 11 7 4 0 0 14
Shreveport Mudbugs 10 6 4 0 0 12
Corpus Christi IceRays 10 4 6 0 0 8
Odessa Jackalopes 9 3 5 0 1 7
Lone Star Brahmas 10 3 6 0 1 7

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