The IceRays Weekly is a weekly recap and preview of IceRays news, games, and more. The IceRays Weekly will be released every Monday during the 2014-15 season.
Friday, November 7: Odessa Jackalopes 1, IceRays 5
Shots: Jackalopes 31, IceRays 38
PP: Jackalopes 0-for-2, IceRays 1-for-3
The Corpus Christi IceRays rebounded after last week's loss with a 5-1 victory over the Odessa Jackalopes from the American Bank Center. The IceRays improved to 4-0-3 in the first game in a two-game set.
The IceRays scored five unanswered goals through the first 54:06 of the game. Forward Wes Michaud scored both goals in the first period at 16:02 and 19:03 to take the early 2-0 lead. Forward Ryan Cusin added a power play tally at 11:07 of the second period to spread the lead, and forward Nic LaBurn threw one into the back of the net at 13:18 to take a 4-0 lead into the second intermission. Forward Nathan Bryer scored an unassisted goal at 12:50 of the third period to help seal the win.
Jackalopes Jesse Junttila scored the lone tally for Odessa, scoring at 15:56 of the third period.
IceRays goaltender Luke Pickar (2-3-2) earned the win, saving 30 of 31 shots in a strong effort, and Forbes Ploszaj (3-4-1) picked up the loss, stopping 33 of 38 shots.
Saturday, November 8: Jackalopes 2, IceRays 4
Shots: Jackalopes 26, IceRays 25
PP: Jackalopes 0-for-4, IceRays 3-for-6
The IceRays earned their second sweep of the season with a 4-2 victory over the Jackalopes on Pink In The Rink. The IceRays played in front of their largest crowd of the season at 4,701 in attendance.
The IceRays struck first again with forward Ryan Cusin opening the scoring at 9:17 of the first period with forward Nathan Bryer scoring a power play goal at 13:12 to take a 2-0 lead. After an Odessa goal in the first period, forward Wes Michaud brought the lead back to two at 16:40 of the second period. With another Odessa answer in the third period, forward Connor Kelly put the game away with a power play goal at 19:14 of the third period.
Jackalopes forward Ian Mansfield and defenseman Jake Hamilton scored the two goals for the Jackalopes, knocking in tallies at 13:42 of the first period and 16:14 of the third period, respectively.
IceRays goaltender Andrew Lindgren (7-3-2) made 24 of 26 saves in the win, and Forbes Ploszaj (3-5-1) took the loss in a 21-save effort in 25 shots.
Wednesday, November 12 vs. Rio Grande Valley Killer Bees – 7:05 p.m.
The Corpus Christi IceRays being their quest for redemption of the South Texas Vo Tech Cup as their open their 12-game series against the Rio Grande Valley Killer Bees. In their lone season of competition last year, the Killer Bees earned the claim of the cup, winning seven of their 12 meetings. The IceRays went 5-6-1 last season and were outscored 23-14. The IceRays were also shutout four times through their last six games.
PROMOTIONS: The IceRays, along with the American Bank Center, will be celebrating the 10th Anniversary of the American Bank Center when these two teams play. More information will be released by the American Bank Center and the IceRays in the days leading up to Wednesday's game.
The Rio Grande Valley Killer Bees took their lone trip to Washington state to earn a three-point weekend against the Wenatchee Wild, 5-3 and 3-2 (SO). Forwards Kyle Stephan and Parker Wood led the way for the Killer Bees in the weekend, each scoring two goals in Friday's 5-3 win, with Wood tallying three points on the night, and each also grabbing a point in Saturday's 3-2 shootout loss (Stephan: goal; Wood: assist). Goaltender Ben Johansson played both games in the weekend, saving 46 of 51 shots on teh weekend.
The IceRays (9-6-4) still remain gridlocked in the top of the South Division, tied with the Wichita Falls Wildcats at 22 points and one point ahead of the Lone Star Brahmas. All three teams swept last weekend, helping to close the gap on the Topeka RoadRunners to nine points. The Killer Bees (7-5-4) moved up to 18 points after their three-point weekend, sitting in fifth place by only three points under the Brahmas with one more game played. They lead the Amarillo Bulls for that position by four points.
Forward Nathan Bryer has scored goals in each of his last four games, making his goal streak the longest on the team this season. Bryer has six points over his last four games to start the second quarter, exceeding his point total from the first 15 games of the season (5).
Forward Wes Michaud added five more points last weekend, moving him into a share of second place in the NAHL in points (25). He also ranks in the top-10 in all major categories: ninth in goals (9) and fourth in assists (16). Since the start of the second quarter (four games), Michaud has three goals and five assists.
The IceRays have scored points in each of their seven opening games, earning a 4-0-3 record in those games with the win on Friday. Expanding that record to single-game sets and the opening game of the NAHL Showcase, the IceRays are now 6-0-3. In the second game of a two-game set, the IceRays are 2-5-0.
The IceRays rank second in power play at 25.32% (20-79), their highest ranking in that category this season. The IceRays jumped four spots in part to a 4-for-9 weekend against the Jackalopes. The IceRays have converted on the power play in five of their last six games.
IN THE COMMUNITY…
The IceRays players and staff will be given a private tour of the Corpus Christi Metro Industries from 12:00 p.m. to 1:00 p.m. on Tuesday, November 11. The team will be touring both the facilities and programs that CC Metro Industries has to offer. This is not open to the public.
– Go IceRays –