CORPUS CHRISTI, TEXAS – The Corpus Christi IceRays (16-17-4) score three-unanswered goals stretching through the final two periods to earn a 3-1 win over the Topeka RoadRunners (25-15-1) on Friday night at the American Bank Center. The IceRays split the weekend set but ultimately claim the season series for the first time in junior franchise history with a 5-2-1 record.
The IceRays nearly grabbed the game’s first goal on a shorthanded chance late in the first period by forward Brendan Miller that hit both posts and came back out. The ruling of a goal was overturned after official review to keep the game scoreless. However, late in the same frame at 19:12, RoadRunners forward Marcus Russell streamed in on the right wing to score on a lively rebound while in 4-on-4 play to take a 1-0 lead heading into the first period.
Despite starting the second period with a 5-on-3 power play and failing to convert, the home side knotted the game up, 1-1, at 2:30 of the third period when forward Nathan Bryer found a pass from forward Andy McGlynn coming through the slot and baited the waiting netminder out enough to slip it through the left side. The IceRays picked up the pressure throughout the second period, but the scoring halted until the final frame.
With five minutes left in the contest, the deadlock was broken by Corpus Christi. At 15:00, forward Carter Johnson took a slap shot from the left point that was redirected by forward Regen Cavanagh on the way toward net, bouncing over the goaltender to take the 2-1 lead. With Topeka’s goal empty and skating with an extra attacker, IceRays forward Drake Lindsay snapped a shot off of a Topeka defenseman into the empty goal for the team’s second empty net goal of the year and Lindsay’s fourth in four games against Topeka to seal the 3-1 home victory, ultimately splitting the weekend but giving the IceRays the outright win of the season set.
IceRays goaltender Dryden McKay (6-7-1) earned the win, stopping 20 of 21 shots, while RoadRunners netminder Juho Niku (7-3-1) grabbed the loss, turning away 27 of 29 shots. The IceRays pick up action at home on Friday, Jan. 29 at 7:11 p.m. to open a two-game weekend set against the Amarillo Bulls from the American Bank Center. Tickets are available at www.Ticketmaster.com, the American Bank Center Box Office, or by calling 361-814-PUCK. Coverage begins at 6:55 p.m. on SportsJuice.com, FASTHockey.com, and 87.7FM in-arena.
Contact the IceRays Front Office at 361-814-PUCK or go to www.goicerays.com for details on season tickets along with pricing and seating. In addition, stay connected with the IceRays on Facebook (/CorpusChristiIceRays), Twitter (@goicerays), YouTube (IceRays TV), Instagram (CorpusChristiIceRays), Vine (@goicerays), and Periscope (@goicerays).