ICERAYS WEEKLY

The IceRays Weekly is a weekly recap and preview of IceRays news, games, and more. The IceRays Weekly will be released every Monday during the 2014-15 season.

LAST WEEK…

Friday, February 27: IceRays 3, RGV Killer Bees 4
Shots: IceRays 21, Killer Bees 27
PP: IceRays 0-for-3, Killer Bees 1-for-5

The Corpus Christi IceRays (26-17-5) allowed three goals in the final period during their 4-3 loss to the Rio Grande Valley Killer Bees (21-20-8) on Friday night from State Farm Arena.

IceRays forward Wes Michaud (SH, 15:27 1st) scored his second breakaway goal down one player to give the IceRays a 1-0 lead before the first intermission. After Killer Bees forward Elliot Lorraine (2:49 2nd) tied the game early in the second period, Michaud (15:30 2nd) tacked on a second to edge Rio Grande Valley 2-1 after two periods. The Killer Bees came back with three-unanswered by defenseman Evan Bell (PP, 1:50 3rd) and forwards Stathis Soumelidis (14:48 3rd) and Dallas Gerads (17:46 3rd) to take a 4-2 lead. IceRays defenseman Matt Olson (19:36 3rd) scored his first NAHL goal to draw within one, 4-3.

Killer Bees goaltender Ben Johansson (12-8-4) earned the win, saving 18 of 21 shots. IceRays netminder Andrew Lindgren (19-10-3) turned aside 23 of 27 shots while grabbing the loss.

 

Saturday, February 28: IceRays 6, RGV Killer Bees 3
Shots: IceRays 19, Killer Bees 18
PP: IceRays 1-for-6, Killer Bees 2-for-8

The Corpus Christi IceRays (27-17-5) scored five-unanswered in the second half of the game to top the Rio Grande Valley Killer Bees (21-21-8) on Saturday night from State Farm Arena.

The IceRays jumped first with forward Tanner Lomsnes (8:48 1st) giving his side a 1-0 lead before Killer Bees defenseman Zach Bennett (15:08 1st) answered back. Two more goals scratched across for the Killer Bees from forward Parker Wood (PP, 4:49 2nd) and defenseman Gavin Cummings (PP, 13:16 2nd) before the IceRays answered back. Forward Wes Michaud (17:04 2nd) kicked the scoring off, followed by consecutive goals by Lomsnes (17:39 2nd; PP, 18:14 2nd) to finish the hat-trick and take a 4-3 lead. Defenseman Travis Howe (3:05 3rd) and Michaud (7:49 3rd) cashed in later to make the score final, 6-3.

Andrew Lindgren (20-10-3) earned the win, turning away 15 of 18 shots, and Killer Bees goaltender Nick Schmit (9-12-4) picked up the loss, stopping 13 of 19 shots.

THIS WEEK…

Tuesday, March 3, 2015 vs. Rio Grande Valley Killer Bees – 7:05 p.m.
Friday, March 6, 2015 @ Lone Star Brahmas – 7:30 p.m.
Saturday, March 7, 2015 @ Lone Star Brahmas – 7:30 p.m.

The Corpus Christi IceRays play their fifth-straight game against the Rio Grande Valley Killer Bees as well as their final game of the South Texas Vo-Tech Cup for the 2014-15 regular season early in the week. The Killer Bees have claimed the STVT Cup for the second-straight season with a 6-3-2 record on points heading into their final game tonight and can win the title outright with a win. The IceRays are now 10-11-2 against the Killer Bees in two seasons.
PROMOTIONS: The IceRays are hosting their second iteration of Grades For Blades, presented by the Port of Corpus Christi. The IceRays along with the Port of Corpus Christi donated hundreds of tickets to local area schools to invite students to join the crowd at the American Bank Center. Throughout the game, the Port of Corpus Christi will be providing educational information about the port as well as hockey-related information. In addition, Tuesday's game is a Winning Weekday, in which fans can purchase buy-one, get one free tickets and Hunt Brothers Pizza for the game.

The IceRays also embark on a weekend trip to North Richland Hills to play a two-game set against the Lone Star Brahmas at the NYTEX Sports Center. Following a weekend split at the outset of February, the IceRays now hold a 2-2-1 record against the Brahmas thus far with three games remaining. The IceRays are now 7-4-2 in just under two seasons of NAHL play entering their last road stint against the Brahmas.

In their last meeting on Feb. 7, the IceRays fell behind early and couldn't recover in a 5-3 loss to the Brahmas from the American Bank Center. After Brahmas forward Roman Uchyn scored early, IceRays forward Frankie Melton tied the game briefly before Oskar Andren gave Lone Star a 2-1 lead after one period. The Brahmas scored three more times in the second period thanks to Uchyn, Ludvig Larsson, and Andren with one goal knocked in by IceRays forward Nic LaBurn to make it 5-2 after two periods. IceRays forward Matt Colford threw in a goal in the third period in the eventual final score, 5-3. Jake Kupsky earned the win, saving 23 of 26 shots, while Luke Pickar stopped 29 of 34 shots in the loss.

The Lone Star Brahmas swept their road swing against the Odessa Jackalopes from the Ector County Coliseum, winning 3-2 (2-1 shootout) on Friday and 4-0 on Saturday. Forward Pat Egan was one of three players to earn multi-point weekends, scoring the game's first goal on Friday and grabbing two assists on Saturday. Forwards Storm Wahlrab (goal, assist) and Peter Kessel (two goals) were the other multi-point earners. In all, 11 different players earned points with forward Sebastian Vidmar not only picking up an assist but also scoring the game-winning goal in the third round of Friday's shootout.

The IceRays (27-17-5, 59 points) lost one point to third place and better positioning in the postseason behind the now playoff-bound Wichita Falls Wildcats (33-13-2, 68 points), however they maintain their six-point lead for fourth place over the Wenatchee Wild (23-21-7, 53 points) with both teams splitting their weekend sets. The Lone Star Brahmas (33-11-7, 73 points) have caught the Topeka RoadRunners (35-11-5, 75 points) and have a chance now to claim the top spot in the South Division for the first time this season. The Rio Grande Valley Killer Bees (21-21-8, 50 points) also haven't changed their stance with the teams above them or below them, remaining three points behind the Wild and six points ahead of the Amarillo Bulls (20-26-4, 44 points) for the final playoff spot. The Odessa Jackalopes (9-34-7, 25 points) have been eliminated from the playoffs and are still searching for their 10th win of the year.

Playoff Scenarios:
Corpus Christi IceRays – clinch with three wins OR two wins with one AMA loss OR one win with two AMA losses
Topeka RoadRunners – clinched playoffs
Lone Star Brahmas – clinched playoffs
Wichita Falls Wildcats – clinched playoffs
Odessa Jackalopes – eliminated

South Division Matchups:
Wichita Falls Wildcats (3rd) @ Odessa Jackalopes (8th) – Tue. – 7:05 p.m.
Topeka RoadRunners (1st) @ Amarillo Bulls (7th) – Fri. & Sat. – 7:05 p.m.
RGV Killer Bees (6th) @ Odessa Jackalopes (8th) – Fri. & Sat. – 7:05 p.m.
Wenatchee Wild (5th) @ Wichita Falls Wildcats (3rd) – Fri. & Sat. – 7:05 p.m.

ICERAYS BITS…

The IceRays finished the month of February with a 4-4-0 record through eight games. The eight points earned ties with September (3-3-2) and December (4-2-0) as the lowest three months in terms of point production. During the month, the IceRays split all weekend sets, going 2-2-0 on both Fridays and Saturdays. They also earned two shootout wins to extend their streak to three-straight as well as their second shutout of the season on Feb. 21 against the Killer Bees (1-0 SOW). Plus, Tanner Lomsnes earned the third shutout of the season as well as the second in as many months. Unfortunately, the IceRays maintained their position in the South Division at fourth.

Tanner Lomsnes had a very strong week representing the IceRays. In Wednesday's 5-1 loss at the NAHL Top Prospects Tournament, he became the ninth player in franchise history to earn a point at the tournament as well as the eighth player to claim an assist. In addition, he was named NAHL South Division Star of the Week for his seven-point weekend against the Killer Bees. Lomsnes earned the third hat-trick for the IceRays this season and was the first player since Jake Durflinger on Feb. 7, 2014 to earn a three-goal, two-assist night for the IceRays. He became the second player this season to break the 50-point threshold with his productive weekend.

Travis Howe saw two feats completed last weekend against the Killer Bees. With four penalty minutes, Howe set a new record for single-season penalty minutes (209), breaking Brandon Marshall's mark of 208 penalty minutes set during the 2010-11 season. He is seven penalty minutes away from breaking the all-time penalty minutes mark (216) set by Luke McDiarmid over portions of two seasons between 2012 and 2014. In addition, he broke the second-longest scoring drought by an IceRays player this season, scoring his first goal since Sep. 12 against Topeka. The goal is his first in 37 games and first playing as a forward. His only other goal came as the team's first goal of the season.

 

– Go IceRays –