Heinle shines in 5-2 loss to Tornado



Jan. 19, 2013



Rookie netminder stops 44, Campbell, Cornellier score in “Rodeo Road Trip” finale.


FRISCO, TX– In the final game of the Jacks’ eight-game “Rodeo Road Trip,” the Odessa Jackalopes fought hard in a 5-2 loss to the defending Robertson Cup champion Texas Tornado on Saturday at Dr. Pepper Arena in Frisco, Texas. With the loss, Odessa’s tenth in a row, the Jacks fell to 5-31-2 overall this season and with 12 points, remain alone in sixth place in the NAHL’s South Division standings.

After an intense, yet measured start to the game, Texas opened the scoring at 10:18 of the first, on an unassisted Scott Conway tally that came following a Jackalopes defensive-zone turnover. Prosper, Texas native Dylan Campbell evened the score for the Jacks at 11:47 with his first career NAHL goal, assisted by Jimmy Peplinski, but the Tornado potted a pair of late tallies in quick succession, from Mitchell McPherson at 17:17 and AJ Duggan at 17:34, respectively, to take a 3-1 lead into the first intermission.

In the second, McPherson’s second goal of the game extended the Texas lead to 4-1 at 9:06, but the Jackalopes answered quickly when Peplinski tapped a neutral zone feed to leading Odessa scorer Lawrence Cornellier at 10:54 and the Machesney Park, Illinois native converted a breakaway chance to pot his 21st goal of the season, drawing the Jacks within a pair of goals at 4-2. The lone third period score went the Tornado’s way, as Leo Lumm rifled home his sixth marker of the season two minutes into the final frame to post the final margin for Texas at 5-2.

In his 15th appearance in net for Odessa this season, Jacks netminder Phil Heinle stood out on Saturday, stopping 44 of the 49 Tornado shots he faced, en route to his 12th loss of the season. While Odessa’s power-play was held scoreless on three chances, the Jacks’ penalty kill was stellar, shutting down the second-ranked Texas man-up unit on all five of their Saturday opportunities.

Next up for the Odessa, it’s a long-awaited homecoming, as the Jackalopes return to Ector County Coliseum on Friday and Saturday for a pair of tilts vs. the Corpus Christi IceRays.

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.