AMARILLO, TEXAS – The Corpus Christi IceRays opened the game early but couldn’t hold off the Amarillo Bulls, dropping the opening game of the weekend, 5-4 (1-0), in a shootout. The IceRays were given 70 penalty minutes on 16 infractions to Amarillo’s 52 minutes on 14 infractions with four misconducts, two of them as game misconducts.
The IceRays scored their earliest goal to start a game this season to gain the early lead, 1-0. Forward Wes Michaud tucked home the opening goal just 17 seconds into the opening period after an initial chance developed by defenseman Logan Gestro and forward Joe Chitwood. One more came at 3:56 of the first period when forward Tanner Lomsnes redirected a shot from the blue line by defenseman Taylor Karel to spread the lead, 2-0. Michaud gained his second point of the night on the secondary assist. The Bulls would answer at 18:02 of the same period on an unassisted goal by forward Will Harrison to cut the deficit, 2-1. Ten penalties were called in the first period, with eight of those against the IceRays including two misconducts, one of which sent IceRays forward Connor Kelly off for a game misconduct for abuse of officials.
The aggression didn’t stop there as 14 more calls were made in the second period, but the IceRays continued to surge. After allowing a game-tying goal by Bulls forward Rusian Rahkmatov at 7:50 of the period, Michaud earned his second goal of the game on a power play blast from the near side circle to take the lead, 3-2, with Lomsnes and Ryan Cusin on the helpers. Gestro doubled the lead once again, 4-2, at 16:40 of the second period with a shot from the top of the slot through traffic. Michaud picked up his fourth point on the night with the lone assist.
Amarillo wouldn’t stay down in the third period, fighting back to tie the game in the period. Forward Brady Crabtree made it 3-2 at 2:24 of the period on the power play, and Rahkmatov evened the scoreline, 4-4, to tie the game. Late in the third period, Cusin scored what would have been the game-winning goal, however the goal judge stated that the puck did not go into the net. That forced overtime, and after no scoring in the extra period, the game went to a shootout, and Crabtree scored the lone tally to grab the win for Amarillo, 5-4 (1-0). Bulls netminder Anton Martinsson (2-2-0) got the win after coming off the bench to save 36 of 38 attempts, and IceRays goaltender Luke Pickar (1-2-2) was given the loss, saving 39 of 43 shots.
The IceRays close out the weekend series against the Amarillo Bulls on Saturday, October 25 at 7:05 p.m. Coverage begins with Countdown to Faceoff at 6:50 p.m. on the IceRays flagship station, SportsRadio Corpus Christi.
The IceRays return to the American Bank Center on Thursday, October 30 against the Wichita Falls Wildcats. Call the front office at 361-814-7825 for season and individual ticket details or check out the pricing and seating chart online at www.goicerays.com. Stay current with the latest team news by visiting www.goicerays.com. In addition, stay connected with the IceRays on Facebook (/CorpusChristiIceRays), Twitter (@goicerays), and YouTube (IceRays TV).