Photo Courtesy of David Dudich: TJ Black stonewalled the leagues' leading offense in a 2 - 0 shutout of the Amarillo Bulls. It was Black's third shutout in 18 starts and second against Amarillo.

Lone Star Brahmas Blank Amarillo Bulls 2 – 0


The Lone Star Brahmas looked to take some positives from their second and third period performance last night into tonight’s game against the Amarillo Bulls.

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Play was fairly even through the first few minutes of the game including a good penalty kill by Lone Star. Then at the 5:57 mark the Brahmas found their opening. Conner Enciso put the puck into the far corner for Todd Koritzinsky and he fed it to Jan Hudecek in stride cruising down the slot. Hudecek wasted no time in rifling the puck over the blocker of Collin Delia. The middle of the period saw a lot of back and forth action until the Brahmas struck once again at 19:10. This time it was Hunter Stanley, who picked up his first NAHL point with a goal last night, that got things started. Stanley carried the puck to the high slot then slid it to Gordie Helmuth in the right faceoff circle. Helmuth’s wrister was off Delia’s shoulder and out the other side where Johan Steen was waiting to turn it around and into the back of the net. It was the rookie defenseman’s ninth point and first goal of the season.

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Photo Courtesy of David Dudich: Brahmas' rookie defenseman Johan Steen scored his first NAHL Goal tonight against the Amarillo Bulls in a 2 - 0 Lone Star win.

Photo Courtesy of David Dudich: Brahmas’ rookie defenseman Johan Steen scored his first NAHL Goal tonight against the Amarillo Bulls in a 2 – 0 Lone Star win.

Period two was the opening act of the TJ Black show. Black faced 12 shots in the period making big save after big save. Amarillo went on an early power play due to a too many men bench minor. About 30 seconds into the man advantage, a shot from the right wing was blocked out front and went right onto the tape of Brendan Vetter on the backdoor. Black went post to post to deny Vetter. Possibly Black’s biggest save of the season so far came with 2:10 left on the clock. The Brahmas were trying to break out of their own zone when the pick jumped over Ben Owen’s blade at the blueline releasing the Bulls on a 3 on 1 break. Mike Davis moved the puck from the center to Roman Ammirato late. Ammirato wristed a shot from just outside the paint on the right wing side, but Black shot out the glove and swatted it away to preserve the 2 – 0 lead.

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In the third Black once again faced some withering pressure especially on Amarillo’s lone power play of the period. Right at the midpoint of the period with the Bulls power play moving the puck Cody Gylling ran right over the top of Black sending both players into the net, but referee Jordan Solomon must have swallowed his whistle as there was no call. Fortunately, the Brahmas were able to clear the puck giving Black the needed time to recover.

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At 5’ 8” and 175 pounds, Black will never be mistaken for former Texas Tornado goaltender Ben Bishop who stood 6’ 6” and weighed 210, but he sure played like him tonight slamming the door on the leagues number one offense. Black now has three shutouts in his 18 starts, two of those shutouts have come against Amarillo.

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The Brahmas were outshot 34 -19 in the game, but stymied the leagues number one power play unit on five opportunities. Lone Star was 0 – 3 with the man advantage.

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Boxscore

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Elsewhere Around the NAHL South Division.

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Topeka at Rio Grande

The Killer Bees scored a single goal in each period and Nick Schmit made 24 saves as Rio Grande took a 3 – 2 win over the Road Runners. Marcus Ericsson, Kevin Antipov and Ben Greiner had the goals for the Killer Bees.

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Odessa at Wichita Falls

After suffering a 9 – 2 shellacking last night, the Wildcats won a barn burner 7 – 5 to turn the tables on the visiting Jackalopes. Wichita Falls got two in the first from Kyle Bauman and Rudy Junda after former Brahma Leo Lumm had staked Odessa to an early lead. Junda picked up his second of the night early in the middle frame followed by goals from Jake Townsend and Max Reisinger to build a three goal lead. Odessa however, would not go away and tied it up with just over 14 minutes to go in the third. Wichita Falls needed goals from Josh Haverstrom and Will Vosejpka in the latter half of the third to salt the game away. David Zevnik stopped 25 of the 30 shots he faced for the win.

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Fairbanks at Corpus Christi

The Icedogs needed a shootout to get past the Icerays 5 – 4 after building a three goal lead in the first. The teams traded goals in the second with Brad LeLievre finally breaking through for Corpus Christi. The Icerays added three goals in the third from Wes Michaud, Kyle Froese and LeLievre’s second with the extra attacker to force overtime. Ben Myers who made 43 saves on the night could stop only one of the three he faced in the shootout while the Icerays could not find the back of the net once.

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Current NAHL South Division Standings

TEAM

GP

W

L

OTL

PTS

PCT

Amarillo

46

32

12

2

66

0.717

Topeka

42

25

12

5

55

0.655

Rio Grande

44

23

14

7

53

0.602

Wichita Falls

43

23

17

3

49

0.570

Corpus Christi

45

16

20

9

41

0.456

Lone Star

45

15

27

3

33

    0.367

Odessa

43

13

28

2

28

0.326

Tags: Lone Star Brahmas NAHL