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 2016-17 season.
Wednesday, March 15: Shreveport Mudbugs 2, IceRays 3 (SO)
Shots: Mudbugs 30, IceRays 44
PP: Mudbugs 1-for-3, IceRays 1-for-4
The Corpus Christi IceRays (28-16-3-4) came from behind for the second-straight game to record a 3-2 shootout win over the Shreveport Mudbugs (30-16-2-3) on Wednesday night from the American Bank Center.
Mudbugs forward Jack Jaunich (14:30 1st) started the scoring with a rebound chance to take a 1-0 lead followed by a snipe from the left circle by Mudbugs forward Frankie Melton (PP, 19:14 1st) to double the lead, 2-0, before the first intermission. The IceRays slowly came back into the contest starting with a goal from forward Brad Power (PP, 6:24 2nd) to cut the lead in half at 2-1. In the final minute with the netminder pulled, IceRays defenseman Cody Fleckenstein (EA, 19:31 3rd) scored the game-tying goal to send the contest into overtime at 2-2. After a scoreless extra frame, Power (1st Round) scored the lone goal of the shootout to take the 3-2 win and both points.
IceRays netminder Tomáš Vomáčka (17-11-4) halted 28 of 30 shots in the win, while Mudbugs goaltender John Roberts (15-10-2) stopped 38 of 40 shots in the shootout loss.
Friday, March 17: IceRays 2, Odessa Jackalopes 3
Shots: IceRays 36, Jackalopes 35
PP: IceRays 1-for-1, Jackalopes 0-for-2
The Corpus Christi IceRays (28-17-3-4) could not hold on to their lead in a 3-2 loss to the Odessa Jackalopes (20-25-5-1) on Friday night from the Ector County Coliseum.
IceRays forward Cole Gammer (0:40 1st) tallied the game’s first goal on the first shift of the night to take a 1-0 lead. On the team’s first power play, IceRays forward Brendan Miller (PP, 2:59 2nd) jammed home a loose puck in front of the net to double the lead, 2-0. The Jackalopes started their charge back with a one-time shot from forward Connor Stuart (10:07 2nd) on a two-on-one rush to cut the lead in half, 2-1. Two breakaways led to Odessa’s completed comeback, first by forward Chris Donaldson (5:23 3rd) then from forward Levi Wunder (6:37 3rd) to earn their first lead of the night, 3-2, and the eventual win.
Jackalopes goaltender Jonny Hogue (13-13-2) stopped 34 of 36 shots in the win, while IceRays netminder Camden Burggrabe (9-6-2) halted 32 of 35 shots in the loss.
Saturday, March 18: IceRays 2, Odessa Jackalopes 3 (OT)
Shots: IceRays 28, Jackalopes 41
PP: IceRays 1-for-1, Jackalopes 0-for-3
The Corpus Christi IceRays (28-17-4-4) pressed back to force overtime but came up shot in a 3-2 overtime loss to the Odessa Jackalopes (21-25-5-1) on Saturday night from the Ector County Coliseum.
Jackalopes forward Ludwig Stenlund (6:39 1st) pushed the home side to an early 1-0 lead during a 2-on-1 rush from the left circle followed by defenseman Rowan Savidant (10:42 1st) from the blue line to double the lead, 2-0. The IceRays started their push back on their lone power play attempt thanks to forward Brad Power (PP, 15:42 1st) to cut the lead in half, 2-1. Power (2:46 2nd) tied the game at 2-2 with a one-time shot in front of the net, and that sent the game into overtime. In the extra frame, Jackalopes forward Zach Zech (4:08 OT) tallied the game-winner in the 3-2 home win.
Jackalopes goaltender Jonny Hogue (14-13-3) stopped 26 of 28 shots in the win, while IceRays netminder Tomáš Vomáčka (17-11-5) halted 38 of 41 shots in the loss
Thursday, March 23 vs. Lone Star Brahmas – 7:05 p.m.
Friday, March 24 vs. Lone Star Brahmas – 7:05 p.m.
The Corpus Christi IceRays come into the final three weeks of the season with their last home meeting against the South Division Champions, the Lone Star Brahmas, at the American Bank Center. With just three games remaining in the season series, the IceRays have a chance to claim the head-to-head set against the Brahmas though trailing 3-4-1-0 through eight contests thus far. The IceRays claimed two of their last three meetings but split the home sets so far with a 2-1-1-0 record. All-time, the IceRays are 15-16-5 against the Brahmas as well as 11-5-2 at the American Bank Center.
The IceRays begin their second to last home weekend of the season on Thursday night with the final Winning Weekday of the season, meaning it’s the last chance to claim buy-one, get-one free tickets at the arena box office. Friday night is another Tride Rideshare Frosty Friday with $1 beer and soda as well as $5 off your fare using promo code “icerays” on the Tride Passenger app.
The Lone Star Brahmas secured the South Division crown last week in their sweep of the Wichita Falls Wildcats, winning 3-2 in overtime on Friday and 4-1 on Saturday at the NYTEX Sports Centre. Brahmas forward Carson Kelley (2+1=3) was the hero over the weekend, earning the game-winner on Friday and leading the way in points. He was joined by forwards Peter Kessel (1+1=2) and Troy York (1+1=2) as well as defensemen Jake Zelinski (2 assists) and John Zimmerman (2 assists) in multi-point weekends. Goaltender Max Prawdzik stopped 16 of 18 shots in Friday’s win, and Alec Calvaruso turned away 19 of 20 shots in Saturday’s win.
South Division Outlook:
The Lone Star Brahmas earned their second South Division title in three seasons thanks to their sweep of the Wichita Falls Wildcats with just three games remaining. The Shreveport Mudbugs also earned a home sweep with wins against the Amarillo Bulls to spread their lead for second to five points. The Odessa Jackalopes staved off elimination with a sweep of the Corpus Christi IceRays, who are now in a share of third place thanks to a mid-week win over the Mudbugs. The Topeka RoadRunners took down the Kenai River Brown Bears in a three-game road trip in Alaska.
|y-LONE STAR BRAHMAS||57||42||13||2||0||86||.754||7-2-1-0|
|WICHITA FALLS WILDCATS||53||29||18||4||2||64||.604||4-2-3-1|
|CORPUS CHRISTI ICERAYS||53||28||17||4||4||64||.604||6-3-1-0|
After last weekend’s results against Odessa, the IceRays still need one more point to clinch a playoff spot heading into their final seven games. The Jackalopes currently own the first two tiebreakers: most potential wins and the head-to-head series, so the IceRays must avoid a tie at the end of the year. However, with their three points last week, the IceRays need a win of any kind or an Odessa loss of any kind to make the postseason.
For the first time in junior franchise history, the IceRays were perfect on the power play in a two-game weekend set with a 2-for-2 performance on the road. Over the last week, the IceRays have turned around their misfortunes on the power play by scoring goals in three-straight games following their five-game skid on the man-advantage. The IceRays power play improved by nearly a full percent in three games from 18.32% to 19.28% and now sits in the top-10 among NAHL teams.
IN THE COMMUNITY…
A couple members of the IceRays will be stopping by the H-E-B Plus on Saratoga Blvd. and Staples St. on Friday, Mar. 24 from 11:00 a.m. to 1:00 p.m. This event is open to the public.
Six IceRays players will be hosting a meet-and-greet event on Saturday, Mar. 25 from 1:00 p.m. to 4:00 p.m. at Timeless Treasures & Collectibles on Everhart Road. The event is open to the public, and there will be autograph material supplied if needed.