Saturday, 10.07.17 / 10:12 pm CT
Eager to start their ten-game road stretch on a high note, the IceRays sunk the Amarillo Bulls by a 5-3 final on Saturday night.
A strong start was something the IceRays were after, and they had it on Saturday night. Just 4:10 into the contest, Garrett Hallford scored his second goal in as many games with a turnaround shot from the inside of the left circle. His tally would be the last time either team would score in over 34 minutes.
Chad Veltri was rock-solid in net for the Rays, making 25 consecutive stops before the Bulls finally solved him. At 38:55, Steven Ipri rushed the puck up-ice at the end of an Amarillo power play. He rifled a backhand shot off of Veltri, and the rebound caromed to Alex Peterson’s stick for a tap-in goal.
The third period did not seem as though it would go the IceRays’ way, as Peterson redirected a shot past Veltri just 14 seconds into the final frame to give Amarillo its first lead of the night. A few minutes later, however, lightning struck.
A four-goal eruption would drive the Rays to a come-from-behind win, with all four unanswered tallies being scored by different players.
Just nine seconds into the Rays’ third power play, Larry Jungwirth fed Aleksi Peltonen a cross-crease pass to tie the score at 2. Just four minutes later, Pavel Koreshkov fired the puck over Jason Grande’s glove to regain Corpus Christi’s lead. Koreshkov’s goal was his first in his IceRays debut.
For the first time since the season opener, the IceRays tacked on an insurance goal when Trevor Wilhelm’s shot from the right wing was kicked away by Grande and straight to Josh Tripp. The veteran winger buried his second goal of the season with the eventual game-winning goal.
Hallford added his second of the game late in the closing period after Jayson Dimizio drove down the wing and set him up with a backdoor pass. Despite the net being dislodged, the goal stood. Jon Russell tipped home a consolation goal at the end of regulation for Amarillo.
Veltri earned his first victory as an IceRay, denying 35 of the 38 shots which were sent his way. Grande was charged with the defeat, making 24 of a possible 29 saves. The IceRays will close out the series on Sunday night. Puck drop is scheduled for 7:05 pm CT at the Amarillo Civic Center.