Saturday, November 12, 2011

Mark Ehl heads for the ice as Mike Zbriger charges forward during last night's game at NYTEX

Rock'em Sock 'em Hockey

Brahmas defeat Blaze in shoot out

The Texas Brahmas won their third straight game at the NYTEX Sports Centre on Friday night and in the process, dealt the expansion Bloomington Blaze their fifth straight loss. The Brahmas' win percentage is up to .500 with a 4-4-0 record which places them in fifth place in the Berry Conference.

Jordan Kary scored the game-winner in the five-round shoot and Chad Woollard tallied his first goal of the season in what was a hard fought, physical contest.

Despite their hardships this season, the Blaze played with incredible fortitude with a scrappy, yet effective style somewhat reminiscent of the Arizona Sundogs. This will be good preparation for the Brahmas, who embark on a 1,000 mile road trip next week to face the 'Dogs in a three-in-three series which begins on Thursday at Tim's Toyota Center.

Steve Silverthorn earned his second win as a Brahma, stopping 17 of 19 shots faced in 65 minutes of play. Silverthorn's record improves to 2-4-0 with a 2.65 GAA and a .899 save percentage. Special mention to Blaze goalie Marco Emond who faced 42 shots and kept his team in the game, only to fall in the shoot out.

This first period was a bit tedious as the two sides got to know one another. Adam Hogg earned the sole penalty at the :24 mark for hooking, but Bloomington failed to convert on the man advantage. The Brahmas out shot Bloomington 7-5 but neither goalie was solved after 20 minutes.

The Brahmas drew first blood 8:05 into the middle frame when Jordan Kary passed the puck to T.J. Fox after being stymied at the left side of the crease by Blaze defenseman Craig Cescon. Fox worked the rubber to the other side of the crease and sent it in past Emond, who failed to get his catcher up in time. Phil Fox was also credited with an assist.

The Blaze responded 88 seconds later following dual minors (Hogg/Holding, Curran/Charging) called on the Brahmas led to a 5-on-3 power play. Travis Granbois scored the equalizer when he forced the puck through a narrow gap between the right post and Silverthorn's left skate. Aaron Dawson and Mark Znutas were credited with the assists.

The Brahmas had a 13-7 shot advantage in the second period but were unable to beat Emond a second time and the 1-1 score held going into the second break.

The Brahmas took the 2-1 lead just 42 seconds into the third frame when Chad Woollard scored with the Brahamas skating an extra attacker on a delayed Blaze penalty. Ross Rouleau and Calin Wild picked assists on Woollard’s tally.

With time running, down, Bloomington pulled Emond in favor of an extra attacker and was rewarded when defenseman Aaron Dawson hammered home a rebound past Silverthorn with just 20 seconds left in regulation, forcing the game into overtime.

Bloomington’s Brodie Sheahan was called for tripping midway through the overtime period, leaving the Blaze short-handed for the remainder of the period, but Emond once again came up big to send the game to a shootout.

After the Blaze’s Kyle Laughlin missed in the first round of the shootout, T.J. Fox countered for a 1-0 Texas advantage. Jason Dale came right back for Bloomington, scoring to knot the shootout at 1-1.

Sheahan and Matt Whitehead then both misfired, which opened the door for Jordan Kary, who slipped the puck past Emond for the eventual game winner. Jon Booras had the last chance for Bloomington but could not beat Silverthorn who sealed the win for the Brahmas.

Referee: Zak Blazik
Linesmen: James Sanders, T.J. Nua

Steve Silverthorn stopped 17 of 19 shots faced and earned the win, moving to 2-4-0; Marco Emond stopped 40 of 42 and takes the loss. His record goes to 0-2-1.

The Brahmas went 0 for 5 on the power play; the Blaze went 1 for 5. Texas was assessed 12 minutes on six infractions. Bloomington was assessed 11 minutes on five infractions.

1st Star: Jordan Kary - 2 Points (1 G, 1 A, 0) including the game-winner on 2 shots
2nd Star: T.J. Fox - 2 Points (1 G, 0 A, +2) on 3 shots
3rd Star: Marco Emond - 40 saves on 42 shots faced

You can view Pointstreak's box score here and their Game Live broadcast here.

You can view my game photos here. As always, it takes time to edit the 900+ shots taken, so be patient and keep checking back.

Game two against the Blaze is tonight at the Shoebox - be there or be square! Remember, the first 500 fans will receive Texas Brahmas rally towels. If that weren't enough, our Mudbug friends will be making the trip to see their Ray Miron President's Cup and the N. Thomas Berry Trophy up close and personal - something most of them didn't get to do after the 'Bugs won the 2011 CHL Championship.

Photo Credit: Robert Keith

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