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ICERAYS WEEKLY – APR. 24, 2017

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.

 

LAST WEEK…

Wednesday, April 19: Shreveport Mudbugs 1, IceRays 2
Shots: Mudbugs 38, IceRays 27
PP: Mudbugs 0-for-2, IceRays 1-for-4

The Corpus Christi IceRays (3-0-0) earned their first series win in junior franchise history with a thrilling 2-1 overtime victory over the Shreveport Mudbugs (0-2-1) on Wednesday night at the American Bank Center.

Mudbugs defenseman Alex Spencer (1:47 1st) started the scoring early with a shot from the left point to jump out with a 1-0 lead before the IceRays answered thanks to center Mason Krueger (PP, 9:42 1st) on a back door play in the offensive end to tie the game, 1-1. Despite attempts by both sides, neither could prevent overtime to decide the game. In the extra period, IceRays forward Brad Power (3:41 OT) finished a shot from the left circle with a stab in the crease to seal the 2-1 overtime win and franchise history.

IceRays goaltender Tomáš Vomáčka (3-0-0) halted 37 of 38 shots in the win, while Mudbugs netminder John Roberts (0-0-1) turned aside 25 of 27 shots.


THIS WEEK…

Friday, April 28 @ Lone Star Brahmas – 7:30 p.m.
Saturday, April 29 @ Lone Star Brahmas – 7:30 p.m.

The Corpus Christi IceRays enter the South Division Finals for the first time in junior franchise history and take on the Lone Star Brahmas this weekend to open the best-of-five series. The IceRays fell to the Brahmas in seven of their 11 meetings during the regular season, earning a 4-5-1-1 while seeing a five-game point streak end on their season finale. The IceRays were also 1-4-0-0 at the NYTEX Sports Centre, earning their lone win on December 10 in a 6-1 victory. Overall, the IceRays are 16-17-6 against the Brahmas over the last four years and 4-12-3 at the NYTEX Sports Centre. This is their first meeting in the postseason.

South Division Finals (Best-of-Five):
#1 Lone Star Brahmas vs. #3 Corpus Christi IceRays
Game 1: IceRays @ Brahmas – Friday, Apr. 28 @ 7:30 p.m.
Game 2:IceRays @ Brahmas – Saturday, Apr. 29 @ 7:30 p.m.
Game 3: Brahmas @ IceRays – TBD
Game 4: Brahmas @ IceRays – TBD
Game 5: IceRays @ Brahmas – TBD

South Division Semifinals (Best-of-Five):
#1 Lone Star Brahmas vs. #4 Wichita Falls Wildcats
Brahmas Won Series 3-0
Game 1: Wildcats @ Brahmas – LSB wins 3-0
Game 2: Wildcats @ Brahmas – LSB wins 3-0
Game 3: Brahmas @ Wildcats – LSB wins 4-3 (OT)

#2 Shreveport Mudbugs vs. #3 Corpus Christi IceRays
IceRays Won Series 3-0
Game 1: IceRays @ Mudbugs – COR wins 2-0
Game 2: IceRays @ Mudbugs – COR wins 5-3
Game 3: Mudbugs @ IceRays – COR wins 2-1 (OT)

The Lone Star Brahmas finished their South Division Semifinal in dramatic fashion, taking down the Wichita Falls Wildcats with a 4-3 overtime win on Friday night at the Kay Yeager Coliseum. Wildcats forward Aleksi Poikola (15:26 1st) started the scoring late in the opening period before the Brahmas came back with three-unanswered over the next three periods from forwards Hunter Stanley (19:07 1st), Drake Glover (12:33 2nd) and Carson Kelley (SH, 8:50 3rd) to take a 3-1 lead. Late in the game, the Wildcats came charging back with two answers from forward Ricky Carballo (10:24 3rd; 19:19 3rd) to send the game into overtime tied 3-3. In the extra period, Brahmas forward Austin O’Rourke (11:53 OT) re-directed a shot in front of the netminder to seal the 4-3 win.

 

ICERAYS BITS…

The IceRays crossed multiple records with their win on Wednesday night, starting with the first series win in junior franchise history in three attempts and the second in the 19-year franchise history, joining the 2000 WPHL team in their 2-1 series win over the El Paso Buzzards. In addition, the win was their first at the American Bank Center during the postseason in five attempts as well as the first overtime win in junior franchise history. Plus, the win was the first series sweep in franchise history after being swept twice in franchise history: 2010 CHL Playoffs (2-0 vs. Texas Brahmas) and 2015 NAHL Playoffs (2-0 vs. Wenatchee Wild).

This is the third time in franchise history the IceRays head into a 2nd Round series over the last 19 years, but in their two previous attempts did not fair well. After a 2-1 series win over the El Paso Buzzards during the 2000 WPHL Playoffs, the IceRays fell at the hands of the New Mexico Scorpions (who were runners-up to Shreveport) 3-1 despite taking the series lead with a 7-6 overtime win in Game 1. The Corpus Christi Rayz also made the 2nd round in the 2007 CHL Playoffs after the league’s “mulligan rule” allowed them to advance despite a 4-3 series loss to the Arizona Sundogs. In that second series, the Rayz fell 4-1 in the series to the Laredo Bucks (who were also runners-up). The IceRays are 2-5-2 in the 2nd Round of the postseason.

#RISEWITHUS