Friday, December 10, 2010
I'm trying to be positive here, but I've spent about the last hour thinking negative thoughts.
OK, here's the good news...the Brahmas penalty killers are still best in the league! Three of three power plays shut down tonight. More good news...Mississippi, Rio, Laredo and Odessa all lost tonight! Just not the Sundogs or the Oilers, who by the way, picked apart the Brahmas like vultures on Carrion in a 5-1 win at the BOK Center.
The bulls still hold the third slot in the Berry Conference, but with 23 points, they are 12 points behind Allen and 13 points behind Bossier-Shreveport.
What a difference a couple of weeks can make - the Killer Bees now occupy the bottom rung at 18 points and the Jacks are barely a step ahead with 19 points. Then there are the emerging powers - a four-way tie at 21 points featuring the RiverKings, Sundogs (yes, the Sundogs), Bucks and the Oilers.
What's there to say about the game? Things started out well enough. The Brahmas out shot the Oilers 7-1 in the first 10 minutes of play and had two consecutive power play opportunities - literally a four minute man-advantage, but alas, Trevor Cann couldn't be solved. Cann stopped nine shots in the first frame while the Oilers sent 11 shots in the direction of Kevin Beech. Let's face it, Cann was red hot tonight and Beecher had a bad night.
Jack Combs struck first, fed by Harrison Reed and Chad Costello at the 12:27 mark. Oilers up, 1-0.
Not much to report on the middle frame - each team had a single power play, neither team capitalized. The Brahmas out shot the Oilers 11-6. Braden Walls, who played six games with the Brahmas last season, had the second strike at the 12:50 mark, assisted by Marty Standish and Trevor Cann (don't you love it when the goalie gets the assist?).
The third period was a real mess as Beech gave up three consecutive goals - at the 2:47 mark (Michel Beausoleil, assisted by Derek Hulak), the 5:49 mark (Jack Combs, unassisted) and the 13:47 mark (Braden Walls, with helpers going to Sean Erickson and Gary Steffes).
Combs' goal came after a Brahma (identity withheld) lost the puck at the red line. Fonger was livid and tore into the guy when he returned to the bench. Even threw his play board. Sheesh! Still not sure why Beecher wasn't pulled at some point.
Dan Riedel, who was making his first trip back to the BOK after being waived by the Oilers on October 18th, tallied the only Brahmas goal, preventing Cann's shut out at the 16:30 mark with a little help from Mick Lawrence and Steven Later.
Nathan Saunders mixed it up with opposing defenseman Derek Eastman at the 14:40 mark. Eastman was called for Roughing, to go along with his Fighting Major. Saunders received an Instigator (2 minutes) and a Fighting (Instigator) Game Misconduct (10 minutes) for his effort. Steven Later and Brennan Barker went at it briefly at the 18:39 mark and their matching roughing calls provided two minutes of four-on-four hockey for the remaining 1:21 of the game.
The Oilers out shot the Brahmas 14-11 in the final period. The shot count was even at 31 apiece at the end of the game.
With the loss, the Brahmas record goes to 10-7-3 (.575, 23 points) and as I said before, they remain in third place in the Berry Conference. They retain a two-point lead on both Mississippi, Arizona and Laredo, who have all played two more games than the bulls. They also have a two point lead on the Oilers, who have played three more games. Texas is now 4-4-2 on the road.
Kevin Beech stopped 26 of 31 shots faced and takes the loss. His record goes to 7-3-2-1 with a 3.02 GAA (20th in the league) and a .900 save percentage (17th in the league).
Trevor Cann turned away 30 of 31 shots faced to earn the win. His record goes to 3-1-0.
The Brahmas went 0 for 5 and the Oilers went 0 for 3 on the power play. Texas was assessed 20 minutes on six infractions. Tulsa received 17 minutes on seven infractions. The Brahmas, once again, still have the number one penalty kill in the league with just 12 power play goals allowed and a 87.50 percentage.
The 3rd Star of the game went to Trevor Cann for his night in defense of the net. The 2nd Star was awarded to Jack Combs, who tallied two goals and the 1st Star went to Braden Walls, who registered two goals including the game-winner.
Referee: Dan Dreger
Linesmen: Kai Magnussen, Justin Bell
You can view the box score here and the Game Live broadcast here
You can view the Brahmas' press release here
You can view Les Stockton's photos from the game here
The Brahmas travel overnight to Bossier City where they will take on the league-leading (18-6-0, 36 points) Mudbugs tomorrow night at the Centurytel Center.
Photo Credit: Les Stockton
Posted by Robert Keith at 10:25 PM