CORPUS CHRISTI, TX — The Jackalopes (4-4-1-1) earned a hard fought and tight victory over the Corpus Christi IceRays (8-3-1-1) on Friday night at the American Bank Center.
The first goal came out of a bit of controversy as the Jackalopes completed a two-on-one, successfully converting the chance, the goal was waved off and a penalty assessed to the Jackalopes on the play. On the ensuing power play Corpus Christi scored to take a 1-0 lead.
Undeterred, by the setback, the Jackalopes pressed on and converted on a second two-on-one chance after Jakub Uram sent a nice feed over to Nick Kiemel who buried his first NAHL goal of his career.
The Jackalopes had a great start to the second period and scored under two minutes in. A shot from the point by John Serafin was initially stopped by the netminder but the puck squirted through and was laying in the crease behind him.
Sprinting from the wall Vilho Saariluoma was able to get a stick on the loose puck and knocked it into the back of the net for his second of the season.
With the score 2-1 in favor of the Jackalopes, Odessa found themselves on the back foot but led by Aaron Randazzo they stood tall defensively.
By the end the Jacks were able to knock Corpus Christi off their game and was able to physically dictate the pace of the game, especially in the neutral zone.
The win comes as a welcome respite for the Jacks who had previously suffered a five game winless streak at the hands of the IceRays. Saturday’s win will give the team a huge confidence boost as they get sent fora five game home stand. Their next opponent is the New Mexico Ice Wolves who will come to the JackShack for a Friday-Saturday series on October 18-19.