Brahmas - Icerays Series Preview

Following a disappointing run at the NAHL Showcase Tournament, the Lone Star Brahmas will travel to the Gulf Coast for a weekend set with the Corpus Christi Icerays. Both teams will be looking to turn things around and improve on their identical 1 – 4 – 1 records. While it is early in the season, neither team wants to be in a deeper hole coming out of this weekend.

The Brahmas split a pair of overtime games with the Rio Grande Valley Killer Bees before heading off to the Showcase in Blaine, MN. Even before they boarded the bus the Brahmas knew they were in for a battle in the Showcase as all four opponents they would face saw post season play last year. On Wednesday the Brahmas fell 4 – 2 to Kenai River to open the tournament. The Austin Bruins controlled the game from start to finish on Thursday for a 5 – 3 win. Friday saw Lone Star play their best game of the Showcase leading Port Huron 2 – 1 entering the third period. However trips to the penalty box lead to the Falcons scoring three third period goals including an empty netter to take the game 4 – 2. The Brahmas faced Fairbanks to close out the tournament and got off to a decent start only to see the penalty minutes pile up and the Ice Dogs grab a 6 – 3 win.

 

Corpus Christi started the season on the road where they were swept by the Topeka Roadrunners before heading to Blaine, MN. The Icerays faced Minot to open their Showcase schedule scoring with just over a minute left to take a 5 – 4 win. On Thursday the Icerays gave up three powerplay goals to drop game two to Coulee Region 3 – 2. The expansion Minnesota Wilderness shut out Corpus Christi 2 – 0 in a fairly chippy game on Friday. On Saturday the Icerays pushed Port Huron to a shootout, scoring with the extra attacker with just 22 seconds to go in regulation. Port Huron prevailed in the shootout for the final 4 – 3 score.

 

While the two teams have produced identical records on the season, a look at their opponents so far shows a different picture. To date the Brahmas opponents have compiled a 19 – 2 – 1 record good for a .886 winning percentage, whereas the Icerays opponents have are 11 – 3 – 4.

 

Last 5 Games  W   L  OTL  Pts
Brahmas

0

4

1

1

Icerays

1

3

1

3

 

Special Teams

 

Both teams have struggled on the powerplay this season. The Brahmas have converted on only two of 20 opportunities for 10.0% ranking them 17th in the 24 team league. Corpus   Christi has fared even worse with the man advantage going just one for 29 or 3.45%.

 

On the penalty kill the Brahmas have played fairly well this season and they have had plenty of practice as the most penalized team in the league. So far in their six games played they have allowed four powerplay goals on 34 times short handed for 88.2%. The Icerays on the other hand have allowed seven goals on 26 penalty kills for 73.1% to rank 20th in the league.

 

Goaltending Comparison Last 5 Games

 

GP

W

L

OTL

SO

GA

GAA

SV

SV%

Brahmas

5

0

4

1

0

21

4.20

174

.892

Icerays

5

1

3

1

0

17

3.40

119

.875

 

Who is Hot (Last 5 Games) 

 

Brahmas

G

A

Pts

Anthony Mousseau

1

4

5

Paul Fregeau

1

3

4

AJ Duggan

1

2

3

Jan Hudecek

2

0

2

Liam Stirtzinger

2

0

2

 
Icerays

 G

A

Pts

Jake Durflinger

0

4

4

Eric Purcell

2

1

3

Maurin Bouvet

2

0

2

Tony Roisum

1

1

2

Three Tied At

0

2

2

 

Series Insight

 

During the weekly Brahma Talk Show on KATX radio, Head Coach Dan Wildfong assessed the team coming out of the NAHL Showcase Tournament. “We have a lot of room to improve, but I have already seen some improvements this week.” Host Matthew Householder asked if any roster moves could be expected. “We re bringing in three new guys,” stated Wildfong. “There are a couple of things still pending, but we are going to try to make us have a little more experience up front.”

 

“It’s a good team we are playing in Corpus, we have to make sure we are ready to go this weekend,” said Wildfong. “Corpus is not the most physical team. Their size is not overwhelming, but they are really fast and opportunistic.”

 

The voice of the Icerays Rob Lippolis discussed the upcoming series with Icerays Assistant Coach Jeff Worlton on the Icerays Coach’s Show Podcast. “People are not giving them (Brahmas) credit. They are a big team, they are physical.” Worlton continued “There is no quit in their game. I imagine that is going to be their M.O. this season. ‘We are not going to out skill you, but we are going to outwork you’.”

 

Brahmas Captain AJ Duggan is tied for fourth in the league in scoring with 3G – 4A for 7 points.

 

Corpus Christi’s Lucas McDiarmid is currently fifth in the league in PIM’s with 25 in his six games played.

 

Anthony Mousseau is tied for fourth in the league in Defenseman scoring with 5 points on 1G – 4A while Alexey Solovyev is tied for eighth at 4 points on 1G – 3A.

 

Jacob Nehama made 56 saves last Thursday against the Austin Bruins.

 

Lone Star leads the league with 166 PIM’s, Majors with 8 and 10 Min Misconducts with 3.

 

Corpus Christi is setting on an even 100 PIM’s with 2 Majors and 2 10 Min Misconducts.

 

The Brahmas offense picks up as the game goes along with per period goals of 2 – 5 – 6. The Icerays have struggled in the second with the long change scoring per period of 4 – 1 – 6. The Icerays are a -6 in scoring differential in the second.

 

One area where the Brahmas have struggled is in shots on goal. Lone Star has a -119 shots on goal differential with 100 shots for and 219 shots against. Corpus Christi has a +12 differential with 162 shots for and 150 shots against.

 

Goals Per Game favor the Brahmas as they average 2.33 goals per game while the Icerays average 1.83.

 

Tags: Corpus Christi Icerays Lone Star Brahmas NAHL

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