Saturday, December 5, 2009

John DeCaro misses Luke Sellars' game winning goal as the Brahmas take a 3-2 lead in the third period

That's three in a row

The Brahmas defeat the Mudbugs 4-2

The Texas Brahmas defeated the Bossier-Shreveport Mudbugs by a score of 4-2 tonight at the NYTEX Sports Centre. The Brahmas looked sharp as they earned their third win in a row for the first time this season.

Highlights included two defensive goals and an empty-netter in the final two seconds of the game. With the win, the Brahmas record goes to 10-9-3 (.523) and they are now tied with Rio Grande Valley for fourth place in the Southern Conference with 23 points. Both teams are three points behind Laredo (11-4-4).

There was a fair representation of Mudbugs fans in the audience, but nowhere near what we used to see during the 2007-08 season. I wish more would make the trip - they are a great bunch of fans to have visit at NYTEX. I was taken aback by the one gentleman who was wearing a Mudbugs sweater with a New York Yankees cap. There's just something wrong with that. But hey, to each his own.

Dale Lupul was on the bench alongside Scott Muscutt in civilian clothes. Lupul looked like a natural as an assistant coach up there. Hate to see him anywhere but on the ice, but it looks like his playing days may be over.

The game opened up with each team feeling the other out, with several changes to the roster having been made on both sides since they last met on November 8th.

A Tripping call on Mudbug defenseman Simon Mangos led to a power play goal from Justin Kinnunen at the 8:06 mark of the first period. Kinnunen received a pass in the high slot and fired a shot just inside the post on John DeCaro’s stick side to open the scoring. Jordan Cameron and Matt Burto were credited with the assist.

The Brahmas out shot the Mudbugs 8-7 in the opening period and maintained the 1-0 lead heading into the first intermission.

The Brahmas opened the second period with 1:21 remaining on a man-advantage thanks to a late Hooking call on David Pszenyczny. Then, Joe Ori was called for Tripping at the :40 mark, giving the Brahmas an early five-on three but they were unable to capitalize before Pszenyczny was released. A Holding call on Grant Jacobsen at the 1:52 mark led to some four-on-four play, during which Tyler Skworchinski added another goal to the Brahmas tally. Skating into the low slot, Skworchinski beat John DeCaro with a wrister to make it a 2-0 score at the 2:18 mark. Matt Burto and Luke Sellars assisted.

After three unsuccessful power plays in the second frame, the Mudbugs finally broke through on the man-advantage late in the period. Controlling the puck low in the Texas zone, Brett Smith fed a pass to Tyrel Lucas, who quickly wristed it over Joe Palmer’s glove to get Bossier-Shreveport on the board at the 16:31 mark. Simon Mangos was also in on the assist.

The Brahmas out shot the Mudbugs 9-8 in the middle frame and had a 2-1 lead after 40 minutes.

A Hooking call on Travis Clayton led to a bloody nose for Matt Burto and an early power play opportunity for the Brahmas at the 2:11 mark of the third. Less than a minute later, defenseman Chris St. Croix was called for a High Sticking Double Minor, giving the Brahmas their second five-on-three of the game at the 3:06 mark. It only took 15 seconds for the Brahmas to convert with Luke Sellars scoring his first goal of the season at the 3:21 mark to extend the lead to 3-2.

The ‘Bugs kept battling and got back within one on a power play opportunity when Travis Clayton beat Joe Palmer with a shot to the top corner at the 16:19 mark. Shawn Limpright and Jeff Kyrzackos were credited with the assist.

The 'Bugs continued to battle for the equalizer and Scott Muscutt pulled John DeCaro in the final minute of the game, but Grant Jacobsen got hold of the puck in the final seconds and scored on the empty net to cap off the 4-2 win.

The third period shot count was 11-7 and the game count was 26-24, advantage Bossier-Shreveport.

Joe Palmer made 24 saves on 26 shots and earned the win. His record goes to 5-3-2-1. John DeCaro made 20 saves on 23 shots and takes the loss. His record goes to 5-6-0.

The Brahmas went 2 for 8 on the power play. Bossier-Shreveport went 0 for 7. The Brahmas were assessed 14 minutes on 7 infractions; The Mudbugs received 16 minutes on eight infractions.

The 3rd Star of the game went to Matt Burto two assists on the night. The 2nd Star was awarded to Joe Palmer for his performance in net and the 1st Star went to Luke Sellars for an assist and the game winning goal.

You can view the box score here

You can view my photos from the game here

The Brahmas will spend the next couple of days preparing for Wednesday night's home game against the second place Allen Americans (15-4-1, 31 points). This is the first game between the two teams since a hit from James Hiebert put Americans netminder Charlie Effinger on injured reserve.

Photo Credit: Robert Keith

1 comment:

Old Bull said...

Great shot Robert!