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 2016-17 season.
Friday, April 7: Wichita Falls Wildcats 4, IceRays 5
Shots: Wildcats 40, IceRays 31
PP: Wildcats 2-for-5, IceRays 1-for-6
The Corpus Christi IceRays (30-19-4-5) secured third place with their 5-4 regulation win over the Wichita Falls Wildcats (29-23-5-2) on Friday night at the American Bank Center.
Wildcats forward Ricky Carballo (PP, 3:34 2nd) opened a swift bout of scoring lasting 2:20 minutes between both sides, including goals from: IceRays forward Griffin Loughran (5:03 2nd) on a backhanded shot top-shelf, Wildcats forward Nick Rosa (PP, 5:37 2nd) on a wrist shot from the left circle, and IceRays forward Josh Tripp (5:54 2nd) on a scrum in front of the net to finally level the score, 2-2. Wildcats forward Matt Hanewall (16:36 2nd) edged the road side ahead 3-2 before the start of the third, when the IceRays took claim of the game. Center Mason Krueger (PP, 2:46 3rd) tied the game with a deflection in the slot, and center David Thomson (14:01 3rd) put the IceRays up 4-3 on a rebound. Wildcats defenseman Jonathan Waring (17:12 3rd) pushed the road side level again, 4-4, but with third place on the line the Wildcats pulled their goalie late, allowing Krueger (EN, 19:43 3rd) to seal the 5-4 win with an empty net goal.
IceRays netminder Tomáš Vomáčka (19-13-6) halted 36 of 40 shots in the win, while Wildcats goaltender Jared Dempsey (13-12-3) stopping 26 of 30 shots in the loss.
Saturday, April 8: Wichita Falls Wildcats 1, IceRays 5
Shots: Wildcats 32, IceRays 48
PP: Wildcats 1-for-5, IceRays 2-for-5
The Corpus Christi IceRays (32-19-4-5) closed the 2016-17 season with a strong 5-1 win over the Wichita Falls Wildcats (29-24-5-2) on Saturday night at the American Bank Center.
IceRays forward Cole Gammer (17:08 1st) started the scoring to break a tight deadlock in the opening period to take a 1-0 lead. IceRays defenseman Trevor Wilhelm (0:50 2nd) came off the bench to bury a one-time shot and double the lead before Wildcats forward Blake Ripley (PP, 12:45 2nd) found the lone road answer of the night to cut the lead to 2-1. The IceRays poured on pressure and goals in the third period thanks to forward Brad Power (0:21 3rd) and two tallies from forward Larry Jungwirth (PP, 10:54 3rd; PP, 15:39 3rd) to finish the year with a 5-1 victory.
IceRays netminder Camden Burggrabe (11-6-3) turned away 31 of 32 shots in the win, while Wildcats goaltender Jared Dempsey (13-13-3) halted 43 of 48 shots in the loss.
Friday, April 14 @ Shreveport Mudbugs – 7:05 p.m.
Saturday, April 15 @ Shreveport Mudbugs – 7:05 p.m.
The Corpus Christi IceRays open the 2017 Robertson Cup Playoffs with a best-of-five series against the Shreveport Mudbugs beginning from George’s Pond at Hirsch Coliseum for Games 1 & 2. The IceRays completed their first season series against the Mudbugs at the junior level with a 9-2-0-1 record including going 4-1-0-1 in road meetings, outscoring the Mudbugs only 40-37 with a 5-2-0-1 record in one-goal games throughout the year. The IceRays own a 30-27-6 regular season record against the Mudbugs through the professional and junior franchises, but this is the first postseason meeting in franchise history.
The Shreveport Mudbugs ended their first junior season on a sour note, falling 3-2 in overtime on Friday, 4-2 on Saturday and 2-1 on Sunday against the Topeka RoadRunners at Landon Arena in Kansas. Defenseman Dominick Procopio was one of three players with multi-point weekends but the led the way with three points (1+2=3) followed only by forward Jordan Fader (1+1=2) and Kyle Kawamura (0+2=2). All five goals scored on the weekend came from different players, and Procopio was also the lone multi-point grabber in a single night (Friday). Goaltender Dylan Lubbesmeyer stopped 29 of 34 shots on Friday and Sunday, while John Roberts halted 18 of 22 attempts on Saturday.
South Division Outlook:
With the Lone Star Brahmas already finished for the regular season, they looked on as the Shreveport Mudbugs were upset by the Topeka RoadRunners in three games on the road to claim only one point while the Corpus Christi IceRays claimed third place with a sweep of the Wichita Falls Wildcats, who will now play the Brahmas after losing 10-straight heading to the playoffs. The Odessa Jackalopes ended the Amarillo Bulls‘ win streak at five games with a split weekend in Odessa.
|y-LONE STAR BRAHMAS||60||44||14||2||0||90||.750||7-2-1-0|
|x-CORPUS CHRISTI ICERAYS||60||32||19||4||5||73||.608||5-3-1-1|
|x-WICHITA FALLS WILDCATS||60||29||24||5||2||65||.542||0-8-2-0|
South Division Semifinals (Best-of-Five):
#1 Lone Star Brahmas vs. #4 Wichita Falls Wildcats
Game 1: Wildcats @ Brahmas – Friday, Apr. 14
Game 2: Wildcats @ Brahmas – Saturday, Apr. 15
Game 3: Brahmas @ Wildcats – TBD
Game 4: Brahmas @ Wildcats – TBD
Game 5: Wildcats @ Brahmas – TBD
#2 Shreveport Mudbugs vs. #3 Corpus Christi IceRays
Game 1: IceRays @ Mudbugs – Friday, Apr. 14
Game 2: IceRays @ Mudbugs – Saturday, Apr. 15
Game 3: Mudbugs @ IceRays – TBD
Game 4: Mudbugs @ IceRays – TBD
Game 5: IceRays @ Mudbugs – TBD
The IceRays completed a historic 2016-17 season last weekend with a bang, winning both games and setting multiple records. The team’s 32 wins set a new junior franchise record for single-season wins, win percentage (.608) and points (73). The wins and points are the most since 2006-07 (35 wins, 77 points) as well the fifth-most in franchise history in each category, and the team’s win percentage settled as the second-best in franchise history, only trailing the inaugural 1998-99 season (.623), which stands best in all categories for franchise history.
IceRays forwards Mason Krueger finished his junior career on a strong note and in the upper echelon of the IceRays’ record book after a big weekend. Krueger (22+35=57) ended his final season leading the team in assists and scoring and in the top-6 in all three major categories, including 6th in goals, 5th in points and tied for 4th in points. He also closes his career second in IceRays games played (172) and becoming the second player in junior franchise history with 100+ points, joining Beau Walker (2010-13, 139 points) in that category with 43 goals and 58 assists for 101 points. He also sits second in career goals, assists and points.
The IceRays are in the postseason for the ninth time in franchise history and third as a junior program, however they have had trouble releasing from the opening round. The IceRays have only won one playoff series coming in the 2000 WPHL Playoffs, winning 2-1 over the El Paso Buzzards before falling to the Mew Mexico Scorpions 3-1 in Round 2. The Corpus Christi Rayz made the 2nd Round of the 2007 CHL Playoffs despite falling in the first round due to a technicality but never won a series. In two previous attempts as a junior team, the IceRays fell short in the opening round with a 1-4-1 record between the 2013 and 2015 Robertson Cup Playoffs. The team’s lone junior win came in their first playoff game in a 2-1 win over Amarillo. The IceRays are 11-23-3 in the postseason over the last 19 years.