FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:
Oct. 27, 2012
CORNELLIER NETS HAT-TRICK IN SHOOTOUT LOSS
Top line combines for nine points in 5-4 defeat.
ODESSA, TX– In the final game of Odessa’s 2012-13 home opening weekend, Lawrence Cornellier netted the first hat-trick of the Jackalopes’ NAHL era, but a three-goal third period comeback from the opposition forced overtime and then a shootout and courtesy of a Trace Strahle seventh-round tally, a Topeka RoadRunners 5-4 overtime win Saturday at Ector County Coliseum. With the shootout loss, the Jacks earned one point in the South Division standings and improved to 3-8-2 overall this season.
Topeka opened the scoring at 7:47 of the first period as Strahle potted a slap shot from the center blue to make it 1-0 ‘Runners. After that, Odessa leading scorer Cornellier stole the show, scoring a natural hat-trick on goals at 16:59 of the first (assisted by Austin Ho and Ryan Doucet) and 0:19 and 6:05 of the second periods (assisted byJalen Krogman and Doucet), the first such feat in Jackalopes NAHL history.
A Doucet insurance tally at 19:22 of the second (from Cornellier and Tyler Minx) made it 4-1 Jacks entering the third, but the RoadRunners put forth a dogged effort in the final frame of regulation, outshooting the Jackalopes 20-8 en route to a three-goal comeback on scores from Sean Gaffney, Michal Pastor and Kyle Sharkey to force overtime. The Jacks hung tough through the extra session, but in their first shootout of the season, Odessa faltered on each of the seven chances they had before Strahle ended the game for Topeka.
In his first start since September 29, Odessa goaltender Blake Wojtala turned in a strong performance, stopping 33 of the 37 shots he faced in his third loss of the season. Long mired in the bottom third of the NAHL rankings, the Odessa power-play perked up on Saturday, converting on three of their four man-up opportunities against Topeka’s top-five penalty kill and Odessa set a new single-game season high in shots on goal with 33.
Next up for the Jacks, it’s a two-game weekend series against the Texas Tornado at Dr. Pepper Star Center in Frisco, TX on Friday and Saturday night.
In 2012-13, the Odessa Jackalopes drop the puck on their second season as a member of the North American Hockey League. Season ticket packages for the Jacks’ sophomore campaign are available now starting at just $179. To reserve your seats, contact the Jackalopes’ ticket office today at 432-552-7825 or log on to www.jackalopes.org for more information.
Be sure to follow the Jackalopes on Twitter @LetsGoJacks all season long and don’t forget to ‘Like’ the official “Odessa Jackalopes” fan page on Facebook.
— ODESSA JACKALOPES —