The Corpus Christi IceRays erased an early three-goal deficit and took a lead midway through the second period, but a Sean Keane hat trick was too much to overcome as the Wichita Falls Wildcats skated away from the American Bank Center with an 8-4 victory on Saturday night.
Corpus Christi had seven different players find the score sheet on the night, including the first goal of the season from Joey Parizek (Dublin, OH), but they were unable to shut down the Wildcats defensively. On the weekend, Michael Benedict (Eden, NY) tallied three goals in the two games with Wichita Falls.
Wichita Falls scored the first goal of the game, at the 15:03 mark, when Jason McAloon (2) walked in from the left-wing side and beat goaltender Pheonix Copley (North Pole, AK). It would be the only goal of the period for either side. The Rays controlled the shot totals in the first period however, 15-7.
The second period featured eight total goals; four from Corpus Christi and four from Wichita Falls. Wichita Falls extended their lead to 3-0 with goals from Drew Allen (3) and McAloon (3) at the 1:16 and 3:57 marks respectively. The IceRays refused to go away quietly though. Corpus Christi rattled off four straight goals in the middle of the period. The goals came from Sam Cheraso (6, Brunswick, OH), Ben Hughes (2, Jacksonville, FL), Parizek (1), and Benedict (5) and gave the IceRays a 5-4 lead with 4:42 remaining in the second period. It would prove to be the last scoring for the Rays though as Wichita Falls would score the next five unanswered goals, two coming late in the second period on the power play. Chris Leone (3, 16:51) and Keane (5, 18:46) each tallied to give the Wildcats a lead of 5-4 into the second intermission. Shots were 12-10 in favor of the Wildcats.
In the third period, Wichita Falls scored three times to extend the final decision to 8-4 with two of the goals coming from Keane, giving him the hat trick on the evening. Things picked up physically late in the third period as Josh Munford (Muskegon, MI) and Shane Gleason (Phoenix, AZ) each picked up game misconducts for their roles in late third period fights. Final shots in the period were 13-5 for Wichita Falls.
THREE STARS OF THE GAME:
(1) Sean Keane (WFS) 3-0-3
(2) Jason McAloon (WFS) 2-0-2
(3) Ryan Frost (WFS) 0-2-2
Wichita Falls Wildcats (7-0-1, 15 points)
Corpus Christi IceRays (4-4-1, 9 points)
The IceRays return to the ice next Saturday, October 7th at 7:05 PM when they take on the New Mexico Mustangs. For more information on tickets, sponsorships, and scheduling, please call the IceRays at 361.814.PUCK (7825) or visit them online at www.goicerays.com.
“THE NEW ICERAYS…TOMORROW’S STARS”