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Brahmas Close Season With Sweep Of Mudbugs

Photo courtesy of Rebekah Bing Photography: Thomas Daskas scored the game winner with 38.6 seconds left as the Lone Star Brahmas swept the Shreveport Mudbugs in a preview of the opening round of the NAHL South Division Playoffs. Lone Star has home ice advantage and will host Shreveport for games one and two of their best of five series.


The Lone Star Brahmas and Shreveport Mudbugs closed out the regular season on Saturday night at NYTEX Sports Centre. After coming from behind three times for a shootout win Friday, Brahmas fans were looking for another exciting contest.

Photo courtesy of Rebekah Bing Photography: Matt Sankner stopped 20 of the 21 shots he faced for the win over Shreveport. Sankner has allowed only two goals in his last three appearances spanning nearly 149 minutes of play. All three of those appearances came against South Div Playoff teams.

Just past the midpoint of the first, the Brahmas failed multiple times to clear the zone leading to Anton Rubtsov sending the puck point to point to CJ Regula. Regula drove to the bottom of the near circle then sent a pass through the crease to Mark Capkovic all alone on the back door for a redirect past the left skate of Matt Sankner into the net. Time of the goal was 11:09.

Lone Star ramped up the pressure in the second period and had the visitors on their heals early. At 7:51 Michal Stinil grabbed a puck in the defensive zone and played a pass off the near wall to himself to clear a defender. He then stick handled to split Gueorgui Feduolov and Conor Witherspoon on the way into the zone. Stinil skated it deep down the left wing then saucered a pass across to Nickolas Wieben who buried his first NAHL goal, skating in his first NAHL game as an affiliate. Wieben had signed a Tender Agreement with Lone Star earlier in the season for the 2019/20 campaign.

With 7:47 to go in the middle frame, Dakota Concannon carried the puck in offside skating all the way to the far circle before firing a shot at Sankner well after the whistle. The action drew the ire of Alternate Captain Clayton Lackey. The 5’8” 145 pound Lackey immediately drove the 6’0” 185 pound Mudbug forward into the endboards causing a large scrum. At 16:34 Eric Huss and Jack Jaunich dropped the gloves behind the play after trading cross checks. They both started off with right hands then tied up briefly before switching to lefts. Huss stepped on a stick shaft causing him to stumble giving Jaunich the upper hand. With the late flurry from Jaunich as Huss fought to maintain his balance the slight edge would have to be given to the Mudbug.

The third was back and forth for the entire period. With 57 seconds left the teams lined up for a faceoff to Maiszon Balboa’s left. The Brahmas won the draw, but Shreveport came up with a loose puck and carried it to neutral ice where Zach Heintz took it off the stick of Matt Weber and gave it to Huss. Huss fired a shot from the near halfwall that Balboa directed to the endboards. Thomas Daskas and Jacob Skolnik were battling for position just outside the paint as the play continued. While Scott Persson grabbed the puck and carried it around the goal Daskas gained the advantage clearing space to accept the pass from Persson and slamming it into the back of the net at the 19:21 mark.

Lone Star outshot Shreveport 23-21 on the night. The only issue for the Brahmas was that they went 0-6 on the power play making it an 0-11 weekend. However, the penalty kill kept the Mudbugs off the board on three opportunities.



Elsewhere Around the NAHL South Div

Topeka at Corpus Christi

The Icerays go into the playoffs on a high note completing a sweep of the Pilots. Jake Stella and Tyler Love scored in the first for Corpus Christi followed by tallies from Kyle Moore and Anthony Firriolo in the second. Brian George allowed only a third period goal on 46 shots for the win.

Amarillo at Odessa

Trey Bagwell opened the scoring early, then Odessa tied it up a couple minutes later. In the second it was Jake Willets and David Ojamae scored to a single tally from Odessa. Nick Trela, Jason Brancheau and Logan Jenuwine scored in the third. The Jenuwine goal was his sixtieth of the season. Jason Grande picked up the win on 33 saves.


Final NAHL South Div Standings

y – Amarillo Bulls 60 46 8 3 3 98
x – Lone Star Brahmas 60 31 21 3 5 70
x – Shreveport Mudbugs 60 28 22 4 6 66
x – Corpus Christi IceRays 60 29 28 2 1 61
Topeka Pilots 60 23 29 3 5 54
Odessa Jackalopes 60 21 35 2 2 46

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