PREVIEW: ICERAYS VS. BRAHMAS (GAME #20)

CORPUS CHRISTI ICERAYS

vs.

LONE STAR BRAHMAS

Friday, November 20 at 7:11 P.M.

Game #20 • NAHL Game #218 • Series: COR 1-0-0
American Bank Center • Corpus Christi, TX
Radio: SportsJuice.com • Video: FASTHockey.com • In-Arena: 87.7FM

Mobile: TuneIn Radio Twitter: @goicerays

Coverage begins at 6:50 p.m. with Countdown To Faceoff

Tonight’s Game: The Corpus Christi IceRays continue their three-in-three series with the midway game against the Lone Star Brahmas from the American Bank Center.

Head-To-Head: The IceRays have won all three series-opening games following yesterday’s win and now earning wins in eight of nine games at the American Bank Center. The IceRays also take the lead in the all-time series, improving to 8-6-2 over the last three years. Last season, the IceRays were edged in their eight-game series, owning a 3-4-1 record and winning three of four games in the Coastal Bend.

Last Game: The IceRays ended a five-game losing skid with their 4-3 overtime win against the Lone Star Brahmas on Thursday morning at the American Bank Center. IceRays forward Jimmy O’Brien (SH, 10:25 1st) scored the team’s first short-handed goal on a breakaway to take a 1-0 lead before Brahmas forward Martin Mellberg (14:27 1st) tied the game, 1-1, later in the frame. The IceRays gained back the lead, 2-1, thanks to Brad Power (2:15 2nd) on a rebound, then momentum went back to the Brahmas with a goal from forward Alex Berardinelli (9:34 2nd) to knot the score, 2-2. Before the end of the period, IceRays forward Mason Krueger (14:07 2nd) redirected a shot from Simon Butala to take back the lead, 3-2. Late in the game, Brahmas forward Peter Kessel (SH, 14:19 3rd) tied the game, 3-3, to set up overtime, when IceRays forward Drake Lindsay (4:00 OT) tucked in a loose puck in front of the net to seal the 4-3 win. Graham Hunt saved 29 of 32 shots in the win, and Conor O’Brien stopped 34 of 38 shots in the loss.

Breaking Bad: Thanks to their win yesterday, the IceRays ended a five-game losing streak dating back to Oct. 22 against Topeka. In that span, the IceRays earned only two points while being outscored 16-7. Additionally, the IceRays scored four goals in a game for just the second time this season with the only other occurrence in their last win by the same scoreline. Though scoring has been troubling thus far, the IceRays have scored at least three goals in two of three games after only recording this four times in 16 games.

Wakey, Wakey: The IceRays completed their ninth morning game in junior franchise history and second from the American Bank Center, earning their first win at home in that instance. All other morning games have taken place at the NAHL Showcase, and the IceRays own a combined 4-4-1 record. Three games have finished in at least overtime, and the IceRays have won two of three with the other victory coming on Sep. 12, 2012 (4-3 W @ SOO). This year, the IceRays are 1-1-0 and under head coach John Becanic are 2-1-1.

Power Hour: IceRays forward Brad Power continues to gain momentum into the second quarter of the season, scoring his third goal in as many games as part of yesterday’s win. That’s the longest goal-scoring streak of the season by any IceRays player, breaking a tie with three other IceRays. With a goal tonight, Power would join four other IceRays (Michael Dery, Kyle Froese, Eric Purcell, Nate Bryer) in the highest goal-scoring streak in IceRays junior franchise history.

Slippery Slope: With a short-handed goal allowed yesterday, the IceRays have now allowed one short-handed goal in each of their last three games and how have coughed up five this year, which slots them second in the NAHL behind Kenai Rivers (7). The team has already given up half of the total number of short-handed goals allowed last season (10) in a fraction of the games. In six seasons, the IceRays have sacrificed 50 short-handed goals with the most in one season coming in 2011-12 (14 SHGA).

Extra Trouble: The Lone Star Brahmas have had trouble closing out games when getting into at least overtime. Yesterday’s loss was the fourth loss after regulation in five attempts and their third-straight away from the NYTEX SportsCentre. The overtime game was also their third in their last seven games and the first in that span not against the Wichita Falls Wildcats. Despite their troubles, the Brahmas have still earned points in ten-straight games, going 7-0-3 in that span.

Consistent Scoring: The Brahmas have provided consistent production over their recent string of success including yesterday’s overtime loss, scoring three goals or more in each of their last five games dating back to Oct. 30 (3-2 W @ AMA). In 16 games this year, the Brahmas have completed this feat 11 times and earned a 9-1-1 record when scoring three goals or more and 5-1-1 away from North Richland Hills. The Brahmas have the seventh-best goals per game in the NAHL this season.

South Division Standings:
Wichita Falls Wildcats (15-3-2, 32 PTS)
Lone Star Brahmas (11-1-4, 26 PTS)
Topeka RoadRunners (11-11-0, 22 PTS)
Odessa Jackalopes (9-6-1, 19 PTS)

Corpus Christi IceRays (6-10-3, 15 PTS)
Amarillo Bulls (5-14-2, 12 PTS)

Next Game: The IceRays finish off their three-game set against the Lone Star Brahmas on Saturday, Nov. 21 at 7:11 p.m. from the American Bank Center on Stars & Stripes Night, presented by Whataburger and First Title Company. Coverage begins at 6:50 p.m. on SportsJuice.com, FASTHockey.com, and 87.7FM in-arena. Tickets are available at www.Ticketmaster.com, the American Bank Center Box Office, or by calling 361-814-PUCK.