The Odessa Jackalopes took the ice against the Lone Star Brahmas for the fourth time in this early season. The Brahmas, in first place in the south division, owned a 3-0 lead over the Jacks coming into the game.
The Jackalopes were playing with a very drained lineup thanks to five players having to be scratched. Forwards, Chase Thudium and Riley Bechard served their one-game suspensions tonight for their participation in the brawl that took place last Saturday against the Shreveport Mudbugs.
As well, the Jacks were without captain Ryan MacKellar, forward Jaden Anderson, and defenseman Rowan Savidant thanks to injuries. Anderson and Savidant only took off tonight and are hoping with the next week and a half off, they should be good to go in the next weekend series against the Wichita Falls Wildcats next weekend. Ryan MacKellar blocked a shot on Saturday, leading to an injury and will be placed on the injured reserve for about the next six weeks.
The Jacks had to keep going though, and made the call to bring up Jackalopes tender, Ty Black, for the game.
The first period went to the Brahmas as they scored two goals in the first five minutes for the 2-0 lead. After a pretty calm and uneventful first, the Jacks looked to retaliate in the second.
Hopping back on track, the Jacks Zach Heintz scored his first of the game only 36 second into the period, thanks to the hard work of Christian Hausinger to find him the puck. Heintz went east to west with it, faking out Brahmas goaltender Erik Gordon and scoring on an open net.
After Jackalopes goaltender Jonny Hogue gave up his third of the game in just over 22 minutes, a switch occurred and Jon Flakne came out to finish the game. Zach Heintz and Odessa wasn’t done, as he worked with Connor Wood to get another goal, Heint’z second of the game, to bring the Jackalopes within one.
A Julian Biondo and Connor Stuart fight highlighted the second half of the period, as Stuart threw Biondo down to the ice. This fight was the Jackalopes seventh fight in the last four games, including a couple different ones in the brawl with Shreveport on Saturday.
Entering the third period down one, the Jackalopes took some great chances that were answered by the Brahmas defense. One blocked shot led to a Justin Addamo goal the other way for Lone Star, putting them up two.
Without giving up, Chris Donaldson took the puck on a rebound, twirled, and hurled the puck towards the net, beating Brahmas netminder, Erik Gordon. Gordon was still looking forward for the puck, well after Donaldson had scored, thanks to plenty of traffic in front of the net.
That would be it though as Odessa pulled Flakne with a 1:30 remaining in the game, leading to an empty net goal for Lone Star’s Christian Kelley with 10 second remaining, sealing the deal and putting the game out of reach.
Jon Flakne saved 8 of 9 shots in relief for Hogue’s 14-save night. Lone Star’s Gordon saved 27 of the 30 Jackalopes shot he saw on the ice tonight. This was the first game of the season where the Jackalopes did not have one power play chance.
Odessa has the rest of the weekend off and doesn’t play until after Thanksgiving, when they head to Wichita Falls for a rematch of the October 2nd and 3rd games, now with the Wildcats under new management. You can listen to the games, live, on Classic Rock 102.
Tickets can still be bought at the Jackalopes office, or by calling 432-552-PUCK(7825). Be sure to follow the Jackalopes on Twitter @LetsGoJacks all year long and don’t forget to ‘Like’ the official “Odessa Jackalopes” fan page on Facebook.
— ODESSA JACKALOPES —