Saturday, October 22, 2011

Wildfong to begin four-game suspension

Ron Vogel will fill in as Brahmas' bench boss

The Texas Brahmas will be without head coach Dan Wildfong tonight, as well as the next three games due to a league suspension that carried over from last season. Assistant coach Ron Vogel will serve as the head coach on the bench in Fonger’s absence.

Wildfong's suspension was levied as a result of his making contact with two on-ice officials while arguing a decision unfavorable to the Brahmas (understatement) during the March 26th game at Rio Grande Valley.

For those who don't remember the circumstances of the suspension, here's Greg Rajan's excellent recap:

The Brahmas led 4-0 after the first period, but stopped skating and didn't get a great performance from goalie Steve Christie, and Rio took a 5-4 lead with six minutes left. Then things got strange in the final minute.

With 42.2 seconds left, the clock froze, albeit briefly for a few seconds. Then with 3.8 seconds left, Chad Woollard got the puck above the left circle and unleashed a rocket of a slap shot that beat goalie Jerad Kaufmann high to the glove side.

Then things got strange.

The Bees lobbied that time should have already expired, and referee Jon McIsaac consulted with linesmen Bill McGoldrick and Jon Shaw and then ruled no goal. Dan Wildfong was incensed, jumped off the Texas bench and made contact with McIsaac and one of the linesman.

I talked to ex-IceRays goalie and Brahmas assistant coach Ron Vogel and some of the other Corpus exes-turned-Brahmas after the game and they said they were told that McIsaac consulted the head off-ice official keeping time with a stopwatch in the catwalk and the referee was told that eight seconds should've come off the clock when it froze.

Regardless of the reason for Wildfong's actions, the CHL stood by their argument that contact should have never been made with the officials. Following an appeal by the Brahmas organization, the league reduced the initial seven game suspension to the first playoff game and the first four games for the 2011-12 season.

And here we are.

Photo Credit: Robert Keith

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