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Brahmas Boil Mudbugs At NYTEX

Photo courtesy of Rebekah Bing Photography: Seth Eisele stopped 32 of the 33 shots sent his way to backstop the Lone Star Brahmas to a 5-1 win in game one of their first round playoff match up against the Shreveport Mudbugs.


The Lone Star Brahmas and Shreveport Mudbugs opened the NAHL Robertson Cup Playoffs Friday night at NYTEX Sports Centre. The same two teams had met at the Shoebox last weekend to close out the regular season with the Brahmas claiming a two game sweep.

After a scoreless opening frame where the visitors outshot the Brahmas 12-5 the Lone Star offense would turn up the wick in the second.

Photo courtesy of Rebekah Bing Photography: Joey Baez scored twice to lead the Brahmas offensive attack as Lone Star took a one game lead in the best of five series.

The Brahmas broke the seal 26:25 into the contest when Clayton Lackey played a pass off the boards in front of the Mudbugs bench to get the puck past Jay Feiwell and to Nick Siffringer on the rush. Siffringer skated it to the near halfwall then sent a backhand pass across ice to Blake Evennou trailing the play for a onetimer past Maiszon Balboa into the twine. It took Lone Star only 65 seconds to build on the momentum pushing the lead to two goals. This time it was Evennou who got it started hitting Michal Stinil with a breakout pass down the middle of the ice from the defensive zone. Stinil drew Ryan Dickinson to him defending then dropped it for Joey Baez who had gained position on CJ McGee. Baez dusted it off and rifled it glove side at the 7:30 mark. Andrew DeCarlo and Jake Suede pushed it to a three goal lead with 2:50 to go chasing Balboa from net in the process. Sam Brennan pulled the puck off the near board to Suede at the Brahmas’ blueline. He sent it to DeCarlo and followed the play for a return pass. As the defender dropped to take away the shooting lane Suede saucered it back to DeCarlo in the slot for a redirect into the back of the net. Leo Chuard replaced Balboa in net and was rudely greeted by a shot five hole by Stinil after Frank Trazzera handed out a devastating open ice hit on McGee to dislodge the puck and turn Stinil loose on the breakaway. Time of the goal was 18:23.

Shreveport finally got on the board at the 10:22 mark of the third off a turn over in the defensive zone left Warren Natyshak all alone with the puck in the leftwing circle. He fired one that got past the glove hand of Seth Eisele to spoil the shutout bid. Moments later as Stinil carried the puck up the far wall Grant Bondy delivered a big elbow to the Decin, Czech Republic native leaving him prone on the ice for an extended period. The official discussed the call in front of the penalty boxes while trainer Cynthia West tended to Stinil. The result of the discussions by the officials was a five minute major.

A roughing minor to Baez wiped out two minutes of the major power play, but he would make up for it at 14:33. With the Brahmas still on the power play Tim Henriksson sent it along the blueline for a patented Evennou onetimer that Chuard wore off the chest, but failed to control the rebound. Baez who was anchored in front pounced on it and put it over the left pad before Chuard could recover.

Shreveport held an advantage in shots on goal at 33-24. Lone Star had the only power play goal going 1-4 while holding the Mudbugs off the board in their four opportunities.

The win by Lone Star made if four in a row for the Brahmas over the Mudbugs and appeared to get into the visitor’s heads a bit with the major penalty on Bondy and a head contact minor penalty called on Dakota Concannon at the final buzzer. It will be interesting to see if the animosity carries over into game two, especially if the Brahmas can get out to an early lead.



Elsewhere Around the NAHL South Playoffs

Corpus Christi at Amarillo

The Icerays went into the Bull Pen and surprised everyone upending Amarillo 6-5. After falling behind by three in the first Mitch Walinski got Corpus Christi going with just under five minutes to play in the opening frame. The visitors outscored the Bulls 2-1 in the second with Blake Bennett and Kyle Moore lighting the lamp to cut the lead to one going into the third. Che Landikusic knotted the score early in the third only to see the Bulls jump back out front. However, Austin Koss and Landikusic would score the last two goals of the game to steal the win. Brian George picked up the win on 26 saves in relief of Samuel Vyletelka who allowed three goals on the 14 shots he faced.

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