Game Preview: Jacks vs. Brahmas (JAN 29)

Jacks (13-18-4) 34 GP vs. Brahmas 24-8-7 (2nd) 39 GP

vs. Lone Star: 1-3-0

In Odessa: 1-1-0

In LSB: 0-2-0

One-goal games: 1-0-0

 

Tonight’s Matchup: The Odessa Jackalopes and Lone Star Brahmas match-up for the fifth time this season and the fifth time in the month of January. After taking the first matchup, Odessa has lost three in a row to the Brahmas. Friday’s contest will be the third at Ector County Coliseum between the two clubs this year and the first game at home for the Jacks since hosting Lone Star on January 1 and 2. Since 2013-14, Odessa is 5-15-3 against the Brahmas all-time.

Last Time Out: After earning its best win of the year Friday, 5-0, against the Amarillo Bulls, the Jacks were on track to earn back-to-back shutout wins for the first time in team history, up 3-0 heading into the third period at Amarillo Civic Center Saturday night. After Danny Kiraly (7) netted an opening period goal and Eric Carreras (14) and Brennen Miller (3) tacked on a pair in the second, Tyler Gernhofer sniped his way to a third-period hat trick to force overtime, 3-3. After Odessa was out shot 6-to-2 in the extra frame but managed to avoid a monumental collapse. Danny Kiraly was the lone shooter in the shootout to score, and the Jacks earned its first series sweep against the Bulls in team history with a 4-3 win.

Sjodahl Commits: Center Hampus Sjodahl, 20, committed Tuesday to play NCAA Hockey at Division I Bemidji State University (WCHA) beginning in the 2016-17 season. The Stockholm, Sweden native has been arguably Odessa’s best player this season in his second year with the club. Through 35 games, Sjodahl leads the team in goals (18), points (37), plus-minus (+11), power-play goals (6), power-play assists (5), shorthanded goals (3), shorthanded assists (3), and is tied for the team lead in game-winning goals (2). At Bemidji State, Sjodahl will compete against current teammates Danny Kiraly and Cooper Zech (Alaska-Fairbanks) in the Western Collegiate Hockey Association (WCHA).

Miller-Light The Lamp: Jacks forward Brennen Miller, 20, snapped home his first two goals as a Jack Friday night and then scored again Saturday in game-two against Amarillo. The 6’3” 210 lb power-forward has appeared in nine games for the Jacks after being traded from the Melville Millionaire’s (SJHL) in mid-November. The Keller, TX native didn’t debut with Odessa until Jan. 1 due to a partially torn ACL earlier in the year.

Sparkling Shatzer: Jacks goaltender Dean Shatzer was named the South Division 1st Star of the Week for his pair of wins against the Amarillo Bulls the past weekend. Shatzer, 19, made 36 saves Friday to earn his first NAHL shutout of his career and his first win since Nov. 22, 2015. The shutout was Odessa’s first since Nov. 9, 2012, and just the fifth in team history (2011). Four Jacks have been named the Second Star of the Week this season (Brandon Tucker 9/28, Gunner Rivers 10/12, Eric Carreras 10/26, Hampus Sjodahl 11/16), but Shatzer is first to be named the number-one star. The Dartmouth (NCAA, DI) committed goaltender is now 6-10-3 on the year with a 3.41 goals-against average and a .899 save percentage. Over the weekend, Shatzer saved 66-of-69 shots faced including five consecutive scoreless periods.

Clutch Kiraly: Jacks defenseman Danny Kiraly, 20, ripped home his seventh of the season Saturday night against Amarillo and helped avoid a monumental collapse with a shootout game winner. The Alaska-Fairbanks commit leads all Odessa defensemen in goals and is tied with Drew McLean for the most point’s among d-men (18).

Electric Eric: Jacks forward Eric Carreras, 20, has continuously added offensive production for the Odessa this season. The West Chester, PA native netted his 14th goal of the season Saturday and now is second on the team in goals, fifth in points (23) and is tied for second in game-winning goals (2).

Berardinelli Buckets: First year Brahma’ and former Michigan Warrior Alex Berardinelli, 20, has paced Lone Star offensively this season. Scoring a team-leading 20 goals and is second on the club in points (32) and first in rating (+13). Through four games against Odessa, Berardinelli has five points (2 goals, 3 assists) and a +2 rating.

Bulked up Brahmas: Recent Lone Star additions Tyler Drevitch (Merrimack NCAA, D1) and Johan Lundgren have quickly added the Brahmas with some serious offensive depth. Drevitch, who has appeared in 11 games for Lone Star after playing his first 24 games with the Youngstown Phantoms (USHL), has six goals and two assists including five points in his last three games (4 goals, 1 assists). Lundgren, who was acquired via trade from Amarillo, has three goals and five assists through 9 games.

Bruised Brahmas: The Lone Star Brahmas are coming off a pair of tightly contested losses at the hands of the first place Wichita Falls Wildcats. First on Friday, the Brahmas lost 4-3 in overtime after Denver commit Adam Goodsir netted the OT winner, and then on Saturday, Goodsir won it again this time in a historic 18-round shootout that saw a combined 16 straight shooter miss to open the festivities.

Jackalopes Broadcast: Join the voice of the Jacks’ Nick Nollenberger live for every game on the Jacks’ flagship station Classic Rock 102.1 FM and fasthockey.com