The Texas Tornado closed out the weekend series with the Corpus Christi Icerays in front of 2608 raucous fans at the Dr Pepper Arena in Frisco. It didn’t take long for things to get hopping as ex-Tornado Andrew Parras and Drew Mayer came together behind the Corpus Christi net just 0:25 into the contest. The collision resulted in pushing and shoving that soon escalated into the glove being discarded for a short bout. On the ensuing faceoff Anthony Mosseau, playing in just his second game since returning from injury suffered in Odessa on Nov 30th, sent the puck into the near corner for CJ Reuschlein. Reuschlein worked the puck up the near side dasher to rookie defenseman Mitch Mueller at the point for a bomb that beat Ben Meyer over the right pad. It was Mueller’s first NAHL goal and came at the 0:50 mark. Texas went up by two at 11:17 when Icerays forward Emil Romig misplayed the puck behind his own net turning it over to Mayer. Mayer first flipped the puck off Meyer’s left pad then grabbed the rebound and sent a backhander over the sprawling netminder.
In the second period Corpus Christi got a quick goal at 0:55 to pull within one off a scramble for the puck. Perry D’Arrisso controlled the loose puck along the near half-wall, and sent a wrister on net that deflected off a defenseman’s stick and over Hunter Leisner’s right shoulder.Just under three minutes later Mayer restored the two goal lead on another unassisted goal. The Tornado forward blocked a shot at the far point then picked it up in neutral ice with a full head of steam. Mayer drove to the net deked Myers getting him to drop then popped the water bottle off the net.With right at 5:00 minutes to go in the second the Icerays had a golden opportunity to once again cut the Texas Tornado lead to one. Eric Purcell was sprung free on a breakaway down the middle. Leisner came out to meet Purcell, backed in and stoned him with the blocker to send the teams to the intermission with Texas leading 3 – 1.
The third period was full of a lot of up and down hockey and big hits along the boards. In a last ditch effort to get back in the game the Icerays pulled the goalie at 18:44 following a stoppage in play. It took the Tornado just 13 seconds to cash in as Nick Neville sent a pass to Jason Eddy who took the puck down the boards in front of the Tornado bench. With three Icerays defenders on him Eddy used his size and muscled the puck into the offensive zone. The puck jumped up on the edge and curled its way into the open net.
Texas outshot Corpus Christi 37 – 22 on the night. While the powerplay was unable to convert on their four opportunities due to some big saves by Myers the penalty kill totally dominated the Icerays powerplay all evening. In eight full minutes of powerplay time, Corpus Christi recorded only two shots on goal.
Texaswill play host toAmarillonext weekend whileCorpus Christiwill return to theAmericanBankCenterto face visitingOdessa.
Elsewhere in the division Amarillo shutout Odessa 5 – 0 and Topeka rebounded from their loss last night to down Springfield 3 – 1.