CORPUS CHRISTI, Texas – In their first home game in 34 days, the Corpus Christi IceRays, led by a 40-save shutout by goaltender Brian George, defeated the Shreveport Mudbugs 4-0 at American Bank Center. Team captain Kyle Moore notched two goals in the victory as the IceRays (19-15-1-0, 39 pts.) regained sole possession of second place in the South Division.
Santeri Hartikainen and Michal Juscak also scored for the IceRays, who will rematch with the Mudbugs Saturday night at American Bank Center with puck drop set for 7:05 PM.
Corpus Christi outshot Shreveport by a 19-5 margin in the first period but the game remained scoreless until past the midway point of regulation. On their 27th shot of the night, the IceRays got on the board thanks to Hartikainen’s 14th goal of the season. Hartikainen collected a pass in the bottom of the right circle and fired a low, glove-side shot past Shreveport netminder Leo Chuard.
The IceRays then scored three times in a span of 2:41 in the third period. Moore registered his 11th (2:49) and 12th (5:14) tallies, with the primary assist on each coming from Blake Bennett. 16 seconds after Moore’s second goal, Juscak picked up his first goal as an IceRay in his home debut.
George continued to make save after save, denying all 23 shots on goal from the Mudbugs in the third period. George, who was reacquired this week from the New Jersey Hitmen (NCDC), is now 3-0-0-0 this season with the IceRays with a 1.00 goals-against average and a .970 save percentage.
Corpus Christi outshot Shreveport by a 43-40 margin. Bennett’s two assists now put his at a team-leading 38 points (15+23) on the season.
Tickets for Saturday’s rematch, City/County Night presented by CITGO, are on sale now. Doors open at 6 PM. Visit goicerays.com or call 361-814-PUCK (7825) for tickets or more information. IceRays games are carried live on Sportsradio Corpus Christi (1230 AM/95.1 FM/96.1 FM), HockeyTV and Mixlr with the pre-game show starting 15 minutes prior to faceoff. Stay connected with the IceRays on Facebook (/CorpusChristiIceRays), Twitter (@goicerays) and Instagram (CorpusChristiIceRays).