RAYS’ REPORT #27: PLAYOFFS WILL BE DETERMINED THIS WEEKEND

The fate for both the Odessa Jackalopes and Corpus Christi IceRays has come down to the final weekend of the regular season.  Coming into this past weekend of action, the IceRays trailed the Jackalopes by two points.  However, with a weekend split against Texas and an Odessa loss to Amarillo, Corpus Christi is tied for the fourth and final playoff spot in the South Division with two games left.  The Jackalopes have a game in hand on the IceRays and play in Wichita Falls Friday night, then head north to Topeka, Kansas for a Saturday/Sunday affair with the Roadrunners.  Meanwhile, Corpus Christi pays a visit to Frisco, Texas for the first time since December 28th.  

 GAME RECAPS

GAME #1 – 03-23-12: Corpus Christi 5-4 TexasSkylar Spiller made his return to Corpus Christi in a different way since being suspended ten games.  He brought the scoring touch just 6:51 into the game off a rebound and the Tornado had a 1-0 lead.  The Robertson Cup hosts jumped out to a 2-0 advantage while on the power-play, Mark Biggs notched his 17th goal of the season just 3:03 after Spiller’s goal.  Corpus Christi then put three straight goals on the board starting at the 13:08 mark of period one.  On a two man advantage, Eric Purcell took a Beau Walker pass and ripped the shot top shelf over the right shoulder of Texas goaltender Frederick Leisner to pull within one goal.  The first penalty was erased off the five-on-three power-play and Corpus Christi still had time on a five-on-four man advantage, and just 16 seconds later, Perry D’Arrisso stopped in the left wing circle and found a wide Joe Smereck and the IceRays tied the game just like that.  In period two, Jonathan Grebosky slid the puck through goaltender Frederick Leisner from behind the net right to a waiting Brandon Smith who tapped in his 12th goal of the year and 4th in five games.  Texas answered back with an Alex Temby goal on a shot from the point to even the game at three.  Danny Fetzer just 3:29 later regained the lead for Corpus Christi on a shot from the right wing circle.  Texas forced overtime on the power-play with 5:22 left in the game.  Both teams picked up a point and after no scoring in overtime a shootout commenced.  After five rounds it was tied at one.  In the sixth round, after an Anthony Stolarz save on Justin Greenberg, Beau Walker won the game for Corpus Christi and secured that second point.

GAME #2 – 03-24-12: Corpus Christi 2-6 Texas Saturday night the IceRays could have leaped over Odessa for fourth place with a win and Jackalopes loss.  However, Texas had other plans.  After no scoring in the first period, Jack Prince picked up his first goal of the night 1:08 into the period after a shot from the point by Mychal Monteith was stopped by Anthony Stolarz; the rebound went right to Prince for a 1-0 lead.  Brandon Smith then scored his second goal of the weekend as he moved in one-on-one with the defender.  Smith put the brakes on in the right wing circle and rifled a wrist-shot top shelf on the short side of net minder Frederick Leisner tying the game at one all. Texas Took the lead again 16:43 into the second frame when Marc Biggs found Jack Prince wide open in the slot beating Anthony Stolarz past the left leg pad for his second of the night and 39th of the season.  Under a minute later, while on the man up, Jordan Greenberg gave the Tornado a two goal lead with 2:25 left in the period.  Jonathan Grebosky gave the IceRays life however, early in period three.  After three big saves by Texas goaltender Frederick Leisner, Grebosky slide a rebound past a diving Leisner to pull Corpus Christi within a goal.  Texas proved too much to handle on Saturday night scoring the next three goals on route to a 6-2 victory. 

 UPCOMING PROMOTIONS

REGULAR SEASON HOME GAMES HAVE CONCLUDED

          

AROUND THE SOUTH DIVISION

 

Team

GP

W

L

OTL

PTS

WPCT

GF

GA

PIM

HOME

AWAY

zAmarillo

58

44

7

7

95

.819

253

134

1537

22-4-4

22-3-3

xTopeka

58

36

18

4

76

.655

188

148

1229

19-8-1

17-10-3

xTexas

58

34

16

8

76

.655

206

157

1170

19-5-4

15-11-4

Odessa

57

26

26

5

57

.500

146

166

1012

16-13-1

10-13-4

Corpus Christi

58

26

27

5

57

.491

167

190

1144

17-10-3

9-17-2

Wichita Falls

59

20

34

5

45

.381

148

201

1130

14-13-2

6-21-3

New Mexico

58

18

37

3

39

.336

164

259

932

11-15-2

7-22-1

 

CORPUS CHRISTI’S RECORDS AGAINST THE SOUTH

 AMARILLO: 2-6-0 (Season Series Over)
NEW MEXICO: 7-2-1(Season Series Over)
TEXAS: 6-3-0
TOPEKA: 0-4-0 (Season Series Over)
WICHITA FALLS: 5-6-1 (Season Series Over)
ODESSA: 4-5-1 (Season Series Over)

 ICERAYS LEADERS

 GOALS: Eric Purcell – 21
ASSISTS: Beau Walker – 32
POINTS: Beau Walker – 45
PLUS/MINUS: Greg Chapman – +4
PENALTY MINUTES: Michael Dery – 91min
SHOTS: Beau Walker – 174
WINS: Anthony Stolarz – 23
GOALS AGAINST AVERAGE: Anthony Stolarz, 2.79
SAVE PERCENTAGE: Anthony Stolarz, .921

WEEKEND SPLIT…Corpus Christi returned home this past weekend for the first time since March 1st and split with the Texas Tornado.  In two games, the IceRays had 9,996 fans attend the American Bank Center.

PLAYOFF PICTURE…Odessa still has a game in hand on the IceRays going into the final weekend of the regular season.  The IceRays can’t tie Odessa or they will miss out on playoffs due to the head-to-head tiebreaker going to the Jackalopes.  If Odessa wins one game, the IceRays need to win both and hope for a Topeka sweep or one overtime/shootout win. 

 COMMITMENTS

 2011-2012
Anthony Stolarz – University of Nebraska-Omaha
Brandon Adams – Holy Cross
Pheonix Copley – Michigan Tech
Mychal Monteith – Mercyhurst College
Colton Saucerman – Northeastern University
Matthew Weis – Ohio State University

 ALUMNI REPORT

NCAA D-III…
           – Luc Neitenbach (Worcester State) – Luc had one goal and one assist  
              in 20 games as a Freshman.
           – Kevin Crowe (Wentworth College) – Kevin finished 5th on the team in
              points for Wentworth with twelve goals and eleven assists.
           – Derrek Shartz (Tufts University) – As a freshman, Derrek had three
             goals and two assists in 25 games.

NCAA D-I…
           – Michael Benedict (Niagara University) – Michael has two goals and
              four assists in 37 games for the Purple Eagles.

USHL…
           – Matthew Weis (Green Bay) – in 26 games, Weis has four goals and
             seven assists for the Gamblers.
           – Colton Saucerman (Lincoln) – Saucerman has recorded three goals
             and eleven assists for Lincoln in 24 games.
           – Pheonix Copley (Des-Moines) – After being traded to Des-Moines,
              Copley has a GAA of 2.87 and save percentage of .914.

WHAT’S ON TAP…  The IceRays pay a visit to the Texas Tornado for the final two games of the regular season.  Fans can listen to all the action with the voice of the IceRays, Rob Lippolis, beginning 15 minutes prior to the games on the Rays flagship station, ESPN Radio 1440AM.  The game is available for free online at www.espncorpus.comor on the league’s pay-per-view website, www.fasthockey.com.  Be sure to get your tickets now by calling the IceRays front office at 361.814.PUCK (7825) or crash the net at www.goicerays.com.

 “THE NEW ICERAYS…TOMORROW’S STARS”